by Lisa Proulx
College Offers Business Students New Courses in Risk Management & Insurance
PORTSMOUTH – Thanks to an internship arranged through school, Collin Beckemeyer has a much clearer vision of his future. Beckemeyer, a 21-year-old business administration student at Great Bay Community College, has completed about half of new 100-hour internship at a local insurance agency.
“It’s the best learning experience I have had outside of school,” Beckemeyer said. “I can’t say enough about it. I have learned so much.”
Beckemeyer is interning at Kane Insurance, a family-owned agency with offices in New Hampshire and Maine. He began in September, and will complete the internship over the winter. “They treat me like a regular employee. I help out anyone who needs it,” he said. “I have the opportunity to sit with everyone in the office, learn what they do and why, and then pitch in. It’s been great, and I am grateful for the opportunity.”
Great Bay recently began offering Risk Management & Insurance as part of its two-year business administration degree program. Students choosing the A.S. in Business Administration have 21 elective credits which they may choose from liberal arts courses and/or business courses in leadership & management, sales & digital marketing, sports management and risk management & insurance. In choosing the risk management program, they can also apply for a Risk Management & Insurance (RMI) Scholarship that provides up to $1200 towards risk management & Insurance courses and books.
The internship is a critical component of study with this program, because it offers students real-life, hands-on experience, said Monique Jordan, who chairs Great Bay’s business program. Patrick Kane, who runs the firm, agreed to take on Beckemeyer as an intern because it’s important to encourage young people to enter the field, and as a way to support Great Bay’s new insurance program. He hopes to offer the internship on a regular basis to support the program.
“The fact that Great Bay has a degree in insurance is very refreshing to hear. I am happy to assist with getting new people into this industry,” Kane said. “This is an excellent time to enter the industry. There is a large number of people getting ready to retire and who have already retired. Getting good interns who can learn our business and hopefully become employed with our agency is beneficial to everyone.”
Beckemeyer treated his first meeting with Kane as a job interview. He worked with Great Bay’s business department chair Monique Jordan to prepare in advance, and felt ready when he met Kane to talk about the job. Kane said Beckemeyer’s preparation was apparent. He was well-prepared and confident, and Kane was happy to offer him the opportunity. “I was impressed by his enthusiasm about the insurance business,” Kane said.
For Beckemeyer, the internship has affirmed his decision to go into the insurance field as a career. “It’s not about money, it’s about opportunity,” he said. “It’s about being in a business that is growing and will never stop growing.”
Great Bay Community College is a comprehensive postsecondary institution offering quality academic, professional and technical education in support of workforce development and lifelong learning. Great Bay Community College is part of the Community College System of New Hampshire, a public system of higher education consisting of seven colleges in Berlin, Claremont, Laconia, Concord, Manchester, Nashua, and Portsmouth. The colleges offer Associate degrees and career training in technical, professional and general fields, including transfer pathways to baccalaureate degrees. The college’s second campus, the Advanced Technology & Academic Center is open in Rochester offering academic courses and a degree program in Advanced Composites Manufacturing. For more information on Great Bay Community College, visit www.greatbay.edu.