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Junior Zoie Walters is a double major in insurance and risk management and financial planning. She’s preparing for a career in underwriting, especially through her role as president-elect of Gamma Iota Sigma, the College’s insurance and risk management fraternity. Her passion for the insurance industry has grown exponentially since becoming a Comet, and she’s excited to share the great potential within the field with other students.

Hear more about Zoie’s college journey:

When making my college decision, I originally wanted to go to a big university. Since attending Olivet, I’ve realized that a big university lifestyle would’ve never been the right fit for me. The small campus and class sizes, the professor/student relationships and the sense of community you get from Olivet are completely unique.

I decided to major in insurance and risk management because it seemed like a good way to get a job out of college, and I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do. While it’s true that the IRM program has a great job placement after graduation, that’s not what made me stick with it. I’ve learned that the insurance industry is ever-growing with new things to learn every day. I really think it is the right career path for me.

In addition, I recently added a financial planning major as well. I believe this is going to open many more doors of opportunity for me upon graduation. I added the second major because my professor believed I could do it. After two years at Olivet, I am so much more confident in my abilities because my professors continue to challenge me.

After my first year, I began working over the summer at an insurance agency in Battle Creek. I worked full time through the summer and part time during my sophomore school year. I enjoyed getting experience in the industry. This past summer I interned with a company doing commercial underwriting and loved it! It helped me to decide what area of insurance I’d like to go into. So far, I think insurance underwriting is where I’m leaning toward. My main career goal is to work for a company that values me as an employee and allows me to grow within the company.

I am a part of the Olivet chapter of Gamma Iota Sigma, the insurance organization on campus. As a first-year student, I became a member of GIS. Before the end of my first year, I secured a position on the fundraising team where I worked to put on different fundraising events throughout the year with other members of the team, including our annual golf outing. As of January 2020, I became the president-elect, where I will be learning from and shadowing the current president so that I can take over in January of 2021. I originally joined Gamma Iota Sigma because of the opportunities that come with being a member. I became an officer because I wanted to gain leadership experience.

Through Olivet’s insurance program I have been able to attend many insurance conferences, most recently the Gamma Iota Sigma Regional Conference 2020 in Columbus, Ohio. At this event, there were many networking opportunities and even a career fair with many employers looking to hire. Not only did I enjoy traveling, spending time with friends and learning more about the insurance industry, but I also got to make connections with employers.

I didn’t expect to make connections the way I have with the faculty at Olivet. Before attending, when I heard people talk about Olivet, I’d always hear about how much your professors care. I didn’t understand the full extent of this statement until I experienced it. My professors are the reason I speak so highly of Olivet to my friends and family. They are able to focus on me in class because of the small class sizes, which helps for meaningful class discussions and a better learning environment. My professors have believed in me and have helped me reach my fullest potential. I’m not sure if I would have become the president-elect of Gamma without a little push.

I have become more confident during my time at Olivet. I feel like I’m willing to take on any challenge. In high school, I did what I needed to do to get good grades and that’s about it. Now, I’m learning leadership and professional skills through my extracurriculars. It’s more than just an academic education you get; you learn so many skills to prepare you for life and your career.

Learn more about Olivet College by contacting the Office of Admissions at 800-456-7189 or admissions@olivetcollege.edu.

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