Students spend Bermuda spring break studying with XL

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  • Spring break to study: Visiting US students (Pictured in front row from left) are: University of Georgia student Meng Xu, Risk Management and Insurance Lecturer Jenny Atkinson, student Felicia Gill. In middle row from left are: XLIB Excess Casualty Underwriting Manager Kimberly Reed, students Alex Fudali, Alexandra Pedrick, Josh Crumpton, Katie Webb, Ross Evans In back row from left are: XLIB Excess Casualty Underwriting Manager Salvatore Cantarella, XLIB Professional Lines Unit Chief Underwriting Officer Matthew Irvine, XLIB Regional Head of Claims Kevin Topple, XLIB Chief Excess Casualty Underwriter Carla Greaves and XLIB Senior Property Underwriter Larry Penn.

While many students head to the beach to party for their spring break, this group preferred to keep on studying.

The students from the University of Georgia’s (UGA) Terry College of Business paid a visit to Bermuda this month to see how the Island’s insurance market works first hand.

All senior Risk Management and Insurance majors at UGA, they were hosted by XL Insurance (Bermuda) as part of the university’s second annual Bermuda Insurance Market Study Trip.

Unfortunately, no Bermudians came for the trip, because none are currently enrolled in the major.

The trip takes place during the UGA spring break and students must apply to participate.

During the trip the students met with a variety of Bermuda insurance professionals, including underwriters, brokers, claims and captive management people.

And at XL, the students heard an overview of XL’s history and from leaders within XLIB’s business units and claims department who gave presentations on the latest developments in their areas.

They were also treated to lunch where they were able to network with various XL professionals.

“We were so impressed with the breadth of knowledge of senior professionals from XL,” UGA Risk Management and Insurance lecturer and group leader Jenny Atkinson said.

She added: “The students all really enjoyed the Island and were incredibly impressed with the people they met.”

Ms Atkinson herself was an excess casualty broker with Bowring Marsh Bermuda from 2003 to 2010.

“I understand the advantages of educating our young people on the importance of the Bermuda Insurance marketplace,” she said.

“We truly appreciate the knowledge and expertise that the XL professionals shared with us.”

She is now a full-time lecturer at the University of Georgia, which is consistently ranked the #2 school in the country for Risk Management and Insurance.

It is also the largest school in the country for this major, she noted.

“I wish we had Bermudians in our programme!” she said. “We have a few at UGA but currently none in the major.”

Student Katie Webb said: “Having the opportunity to visit Bermuda and meet with some of the most experienced professionals in the industry was a career changing moment for me. My perspective of the insurance marketplace grew to a global understanding, allowing me to realise my career potentials outside the US. Everyone we met at XL gave informative and interesting presentations that led us to see why the Bermuda market is a vital part of our world economy. I hope this study abroad will continue for years to come so other students can realise the infinite possibilities of their future career paths.”

Meng Xu, a student from China, who has been in the US for about 18 months, said: “Our visit to XL Insurance at Bermuda was an amazing and unforgettable experience.

“I feel honoured to meet so many professionals from different realms, including underwriting and claims, in one meeting.

She continued: “I believed that they made full preparation for the presentation so we college seniors can understand the lecture in an easy way.

“When I talked with them during the lunch, people slowed down their speaking for me because they knew that I am not a native speaker in English.

“I appreciate the opportunity XL offered to interact with so many knowledgeable and considerate senior professionals.”

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Published Mar 22, 2013 at 1:12 pm (Updated Mar 22, 2013 at 1:12 pm)

Students spend Bermuda spring break studying with XL

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