Spencer anticipates awarding more scholarships, internship grants in 2013

Applications are now being accepted for 2013 Spencer Scholarships and Student Internship Program Grants and the Foundation anticipates recognizing more students and providing more opportunities for them to gain experience.

"Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we look forward to awarding more scholarships and internships in 2013 than we did this year," said Peggy Accordino, chairwoman of the Spencer Educational Foundation. "We will continue to recognize the best and brightest in the industry as well as fund opportunities that will promote the study of risk management and insurance."

Student scholarships

In addition to general scholarships offered by the Foundation, there are 30 named scholarships. Students only need to complete the general application to be considered for all scholarships. Scholarship recipients will be announced in Spring 2013.

Click here for the 2013 Scholarship Application.

The deadline for full-time undergraduate and graduate student scholarships is January 31.

Student Internship Grants Looking to hire a summer intern? Spencer could help your company finance it. The Foundation offers grants (up to $3,000) to RIMS-member companies to hire risk management interns. In 2012, more than 25 grants were awarded. Grant recipients will be announced in Spring 2013.

Click here for the 2013 Summer Internship Application.

Because of the popularity of the program, it is highly recommended that Student Internship Grant applications be submitted by January 31.

Students benefit from summer experiences

"I entered this internship thinking it was going to be just what my classmates told me an internship was, sitting at a desk and doing busy work while every once and a while learning concepts that can help me in the future, but I was definitely wrong," said Madison Franetic a senior at Florida State University majoring in risk management and insurance and human resource management.

This past summer Madison worked with Chuck Magazine, the risk manager for the City of Boynton Beach, FL. "He made sure I gained as much experience as possible while I was interning."

She said that she not only went out on inspections and saw how safety plays a role in controlling loss prevention. Madison also met with brokers and shadowed one of their account managers for the day

"I was able to leave my internship feeling like I truly learned an immense amount about the insurance industry that I was unaware of before."

Greater understanding

Like Madison, Abigail Tschanz, a risk management major at the University of Minnesota, gained significant education from her internship at the Toro Company, working with risk manager Dawn Soleta, where she worked analyzed monthly loss runs, reviewed policy renewals and documentation, and created a workers’ compensation return to work handbook. In addition, working with Toro’s Treasury department, Abigail helped create a contingency plan to deal with and help mitigate the Euro crisis.

She said the internship was "full of many great learning opportunities; I feel that I have a much better applied knowledge and a greater confidence in my understanding of the risk management field as a result of the Toro internship… I look forward to continuing my education outside the classroom; my supervisor has encouraged me to participate in the local RIMS chapter and I plan to participate as a student member this year."

Getting experience

Two Southern Methodist University risk management students had the opportunity to participate in a unique internship with Southern Methodist University (SMU) in partnership with Arthur J. Gallagher and the Cox School of Business.

Anita Ingram, associate vice president and chief risk officer for Southern Methodist University, said the interns "participated in a program designed to give them a structured experience as a risk professional in a multi-billion dollar asset organization and leading brokerage firm. Based on the University Risk Management and Insurance Association (URMIA) and the Risk and Insurance Management Association (RIMS) professional growth models, with general support from the Spencer Educational Foundation, this program identifies 27 areas where the student intern will have the opportunity to gain real world experience."

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