Brock’s Talent Bridge program to guide grads to insurance careers

It’s a perfect match.

As new grads polish their academic skills for the job market and employers strive to find new talent, one Brock University program is bringing them together.

After a one-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Brock’s Talent Bridge program will again welcome graduates from any accredited post-secondary institution and program to take part in an 11-week online program that will offer career development training in the insurance field.

Talent Bridge Manager Jillian Nero said the program offers a chance for participants to gain the necessary skills to begin a fulfilling and profitable career in an established industry.

“Talent Bridge will help bridge the gap between academics and employment for those interested in jump-starting their careers in this dynamic and evolving industry,” she said. “Through collaborations with our new and returning partners, participants will build their professional network, benefit from one-on-one coaching and other career supports, and participate in an exclusive recruitment opportunity at the completion of the program.”

As part of the application process, the Talent Bridge team will review each applicant’s professional and academic history, while also engaging applicants in a virtual interview process to ensure their goals and values are aligned with roles in insurance. Then, from January until April, participants will complete the training program while simultaneously preparing to write entry-level licensing exams with the Insurance Institute of Canada.

“We are pleased to enter into a partnership with Brock University for licensing delivery and a variety of career development events and activities through Career Connections,” said Margaret Wasserman, Senior Director, Insurance Institute of Ontario. “This collaboration provides an exciting opportunity for new graduates to begin their careers in the property and casualty insurance industry.”

The final portion of the program will include a two-week exclusive recruitment opportunity to connect participants directly with employers.

Employer partner Scott Maskell, President of Erion Insurance Group, said the insurance industry is in need of the skills and work ethic possessed by recent graduates.

“Finding and developing talent to grow the insurance brokerage industry and prepare and embrace the changes brought about by retirement and technology is one of the priorities of my job,” he said.

“University graduates have the necessary skills, experiences and traits that are most suitable for the critical thinking required of an insurance broker. However, the insurance brokerage is not well understood by the next generation of the workforce and university graduates are not exposed to the unique opportunity to work in an industry that suits their learnings and relationship skills.”

Maskell said that Talent Bridge at Brock “provides both the connection and exposure to the insurance brokerage industry and the sales side of the insurance business, while also providing talented graduates with the unique qualifications, licensing and soft skills to enter the workforce as an insurance broker.”

The program fee is $5,200 and financing options are available to participants. Employer partners will also reimburse about 80 per cent of the fee to participants who secure roles and complete a predetermined employment probationary period.

Terry Cockerline, Brock’s Director of Alumni Relations, said the opportunity offers a chance for recent Brock graduates to showcase their skills.

“Brock Alumni are leading in every field they enter, including insurance,” he said. “We can’t wait to see what the next cohort of Talent Bridge participants brings to that industry and we are so thankful the University has curated this program to further the careers of our recent graduates.”

Applications for Talent Bridge are now open and will close Friday, Nov. 26.

Brock alumni interested in learning more about Talent Bridge are invited to an online event hosted by Co-op, Career and Experiential Education, and Alumni Relations on Wednesday, Oct. 27 from noon to 1 p.m. The event will include a presentation about the Talent Bridge program and feature a panel of Brock alumni currently working in the insurance industry.

Anyone else interested in learning about Talent Bridge is invited to attend one of the information sessions listed on the Talent Bridge website.

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