Internship lets student see all aspects of insurance industry

August 31 2006

INDIANAPOLIS - A summer internship opened an Indiana State University student's eyes to the variety of opportunities available in the insurance industry and helped a leading risk management company discover the value of interns. [Watch Video - Part I and Video - Part II]

Courtney Hull, a senior math major who is pursuing a minor in insurance and risk management spent part of her summer working with Indianapolis-based Pillar Group Risk Management Inc.

"Courtney has been a delight to work with," said Nancy Nonweiler, director of operations for Pillar Group. "She is very smart, willing and very capable of doing anything we asked her to do."

Hull learned how to quote personal lines and commercial insurance. She attended company meetings to learn about different products and worked with several departments in the company to discover the different aspects of the industry. She also dealt with salespersons to understand how important it is to work with people.

The internship not only helped Hull learn more about her future career, it also helped to promote the business.

"We need to expose the insurance business to younger folks coming out of school," Nonweiler said. 'The program at ISU is very strong. We realized that and felt it was important for us to have someone of Courtney's caliber to enter the insurance business."

Part of Hull's internship took place at the site of Pillar's new headquarters, which is being built by Lauth Group Inc., a Pillar client.

"It is important to actually see what Lauth does and to know what is being insured and (what is) uninsured," Hull said.

"It's nice to see how what I have learned in class is applied. For example, in claims and working with personal homeowners or automobile (insurance), I've learned first hand what things are covered and what things are not," she said. "You go through all of this in the classroom, but now I see what it is like in the real world."

Hull is open to a change in her career plans. She loves math and likes that it can be incorporated into insurance and risk management. She would like to work with an actuary, but has since realized that she could be happy having a career in other aspects of the industry.

"I've been exposed to some things that I've thought, 'I could definitely do this for a career,' so it's nice to know that there is something I could enjoy doing besides what I planned on doing," she said.

The internship meant a lot to Hull because she came into it not knowing much about Pillar Group or what to expect.

"I was a little nervous, a little apprehensive," she said, "and found that the minute I walked on the job it was a perfect fit," Hull said. "It has been one of the best experiences of my life."

A 2004 graduate of Western Boone High School, Hull, of Jamestown, will graduate from Indiana State in 2007.

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Contact: For information about internships through Indiana State University, contact Diana Cooper-Bolinskey, internship coordinator, ISU Career Center, (812) 237-2586. For information about the ISU insurance and risk management program, contact Mary Ann Boose, professor and program coordinator, (812) 237-2106 or mboose@isugw.indstate.edu

Writer: Brianna Bullerdick, media relations intern, Indiana State University, (812) 237-3773 or opadept@isugw.indstate.edu

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Story Highlights

Courtney Hull, a math major and insurance and risk management minor, has been weighing a career as an actuary. However, a summer internship with Pillar Group Risk Management Inc. has her considering other options after being exposed to a variety of opportunities in the insurance industry.

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