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BFIS seeks applicants for summer internships

The New Year has only just begun, but students who are serious about pursuing a career in the insurance industry already need to start thinking about what they’re doing this summer.

That’s because the Bermuda Foundation For Insurance Studies (BFIS) is now accepting applications for its ‘Intro to Insurance’ Summer 2013 Intern Programmes.

The internships are aimed at giving students considering a career in insurance an understanding of the industry and the opportunities available to them.

Sixteen undergraduate or graduate students will be selected to spend two weeks immersed in the insurance industry in Bermuda, London, Chicago or Atlanta.

Although the internships are unpaid, BFIS pays all travel and room and board costs and gives students a stipend. Organisers say the short time frame makes the internships more feasible for students who may have summer jobs.

For more than 15 years, BFIS has provided scholarships, mentoring, internships and career guidance to students seeking employment in Bermuda’s insurance industry.

Their aim is to ensure that over time, Bermuda-based insurance companies have a pool of well-educated and prepared Bermudian staff to draw from.

But early last year, this same internship programme struggled to find enough students interested in applying.

Jane Bielby, the internship programme administrator for BFIS told this newspaper then that former interns have found it to be an incredible opportunity and many end up getting hired afterward.

“Students come in to the programme knowing little or nothing about insurance and at end of it, are able to say, ‘Wow, what a valuable learning experience.’ They all benefit hugely from it,” she said. “They get to network with the kind of people who are quite likely going to end up employing them so it’s an opening into the industry for careers.”

To qualify, applicants must be Bermudian or PRC holders in their junior or senior year of undergraduate studies in insurance, risk management, finance, quantitative economics, law, accounting, business administration or math. They must also write a short essay expressing why they wish to participate in the internship programme and what they hope to get out of it.

Devin Page, who was one of last summer’s interns and is currently studying for his Masters in Business and International Affairs at Georgia Institute of Technology, said the internship exceeded all of his expectations.

“I personally have amassed a pile of 75 business cards, ranging from new underwriters to the CEO of companies. Everyone was so open and willing to share with us that we all learned more than you can imagine,” he said.

The 2013 dates for the Bermuda programme are May 27 — June 7, London — June 3-14 and Chicago and Atlanta — July 8—19.

“If any student wants to come in and discuss the programme with us before they return to college, we would be delighted to meet with them,” said Cathy Lapsley, executive director of BFIS. “They just need to call 295-1266 to set up an appointment. The BFIS office is in the Cedarpark Centre in Hamilton across from the bus terminal.”

Applications are only accepted through www.bermudascholarships.com and the deadline is March 29, 2013.

For more information, go to bfis.bm/internships.

Exploring the insurance world: Last year’s BFIS summer interns (front, from left) Sophie Farrow, Peter Miller, Sam Bridges, Dominique Richardson and Magic Boyles; (back row, from left) Michael Jones, BFIS chairman Mike Fisher, BFIS internship programme administrator Jane Bielby, Fraser Moore, Devin Page and BFIS executive director Cathy Lapsley.

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Published January 04, 2013 at 8:00 am (Updated January 03, 2013 at 6:30 pm)

BFIS seeks applicants for summer internships

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