Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Meet Rio State Farm Insurance Studies Scholars

Montage of Rio Salado Insurance Studies students, Rio Salado, Maricopa Community Colleges and State Farm logo

Rio Salado is working with State Farm to fill a void in the local job market while providing financial assistance to students.

In 2016, Rio Salado launched a certificate in Insurance Studies to help prepare students for entry level jobs in the insurance industry.

State Farm provides program scholarships to help students pay for the certificate. It’s a win-win scenario! 

Students receive financial assistance to cover their educational costs and Rio Salado and State Farm are paving the way for career opportunities in the insurance industry.

Image of Gina Pinch

"The certificate was created to assist the insurance industry in filling both current job vacancies as well as shortfalls projected in the future" said Gina Pinch, interim faculty chair for business at Rio Salad College. "We are excited to partner with insurance companies to provide employment opportunities for our students."

Developed in collaboration with the Maricopa County Community College District and 35 insurance professionals from 20 different insurance companies, the certificate prepares individuals for entry-level jobs in the insurance industry and enhances the skills of current insurance employees.

The first group of students recently completed the insurance studies program at Rio Salado. The cohort included a group of veterans who completed their classes at the East Valley Veterans Education Center in Tempe.

Janet Orozco
"My experience in Rio Salado’s insurance studies program has truly been amazing. I have learned a lot, and was offered many resources to help me apply for jobs, such as preparing for interviews and creating a well-developed resume. I am currently working in the insurance field and because of what I have learned, I can do my job better." 

Elena Bates

"After serving eight years in the U.S. Army, I applied for the State Farm scholarship to transition from the military into a civilian career. With the help the program, I was able to land a job with State Farm as a customer service representative. My goal for the future is to continue working for State Farm and earn a bachelor’s degree in order to become an underwriter."

Eric Sanders

"I served in the U.S. Marine Corps for five years. I decided to take classes at Rio Salado College because they have a department specifically dedicated to the educational needs of veterans. I applied for the State Farm scholarship to learn about the insurance industry. They have a genuine appreciation of veterans and a willingness to help us succeed."

Brionna Joiner

"I chose to go to Rio Salado for the insurance studies program because it prepares you for a career in a specific field. I now have a foundation of knowledge to begin a career in the insurance industry. I plan to earn the AINS designation to become licensed for property and casualty. I look forward to becoming part of such a rewarding industry."

Stevie Vega

"I'm a veteran, student, mom and now insurance professional! Thanks to Rio Salado College’s insurance studies program, I was able to get the knowledge and tools necessary to start a new career. This program got me acquainted with many of the industry’s top companies allowing me to get my foot in the door. I now looking forward to an exciting career in the insurance industry."

For more information about State Farm scholarship opportunities and Rio Salado’s insurance studies program visit www.riosalado.edu/insurance.

Contributed by Mira Radovich, Communications Coordinator.