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Which risk management specialization track should I choose? There’s employee benefits, healthcare risk management, and property liability/ corporate risk management.

I’m currently a student enrolled in college and I’m looking to switch my major to risk management, and I’m not really sure which track I should do. I’m also looking into an accounting minor, but I’m not entirely sure how much that will help me. #college-major #colleges #risk #accounting


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Emily’s Answer

Hi Abigail,

Risk management is a great field with a lot of diverse opportunities. Picking out which one is right for you should ultimately be in what field interests you the most. I would recommend researching jobs under each career path and see if any grab your attention. I looked into this field, and thought about becoming an underwriter for a while. When I looked into this, I then saw a lot of other opportunities that fell under the same umbrella which also peaked my interest. I now work in pension administration, which falls into the employee benefits field you listed above, however my work now doesn't fall completely in the risk management field. I am looking to become an actuary soon, which I would also recommend looking into if you're also interested in math (which it sounds like you are since you're considering minoring in accounting).

Here's some broad information about risk management that gives a list of companies in the field:
https://www.insuremypath.org/careers-in-insurance/insurance-career-roles/risk-management-careers

Here's some information from Temple about what your undergrad/post-grad education/career may look like (of course it may differ a bit depending on your school):
https://bulletin.temple.edu/undergraduate/fox-business-management/risk-management-insurance/#trackstext

Hope this helps! Good Luck!

Best,
Emily

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Adrienne’s Answer

Hello Abigail,

I agree that Risk Management is a rewarding field and offers a diverse range of positions/opportunities. The previous responder provided a great resource.

In terms of my personal experience, I obtained degrees in Accounting & Financial Services and worked for the largest insurance company in North America for 31 years. My educational background combined with property/casualty work and leadership experience provides a competitive advantage for a wide range of opportunities in a variety of industries.

So, taking a long-term view (considering your interests as well as positions that will likely be in high demand) to planning your career is a wise approach.

Thank you for your question and best of luck!

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Ramona’s Answer

Great question, Abigail. Along with the great advice already provided, I would recommend you speaking to your college's department heads that lead the risk management areas. They can provide some great insight into their learning approach, what the curriculum is focused on, and what roles they are preparing you for. With this additional information, you can determine what interests you most. They may be able to provide some contacts that graduated through their program who can share their experiences with you. Risk Management and the understanding of its concepts is a great building block for any career. Good luck on your selection.

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Hongyun (Heley)’s Answer

Give different track a try, see if you can talk to your peers with their experience, any one in the industry. Would not generally recommend making decisions before actually trying out or fully understanding.

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Craig’s Answer

Hi Abigail,

I would look up to those who are ahead of you in school and browse graduates' profiles to get a sense of what's sought after in the industry. I think it would be great to reach out to those students/graduates via social media and have a friendly, honest chat. Another thing that you could look into is to get a general understanding of all possible paths in risk management; you could probably do this with your education and through talks with your professors, especially those that work a day job in the risk management sphere.

An accounting background will always be useful even if you don't work in an accounting position; in a business setting, you will always be better off with a fundamental understanding on how business transactions are recognized and recorded.

Enjoy the journey!

Craig recommends the following next steps:

Educate yourself by learning on your own and learning from others.

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