This past spring, four Fox students participated in a nationwide competition to test their insurance knowledge and sales skills.
On April 12-14, four Fox undergraduate students majoring in risk management and insurance (RMI)—Holden Haws, Jamal Evans, Ryan Staab and Michael McKinney—represented Temple University at the Intercollegiate Insurance Sales Competition (IISC) in Orlando, Fla. This year, the competition included eleven teams from seven universities that offer risk management and insurance programs.
Randy Dumm, professor and deputy chair of the Department of Risk, Actuarial Science, and Legal Studies joined the students in Florida last April for the competition.
“The IISC uses a joint sales call approach where the two-member teams make initial and follow-up sales call to business owners in a role-playing setting,” explains Dumm. “One of the unique aspects of the competition is that the business owners and competition judges are insurance sales professionals.”
Another important part of the IISC happens before the students even get to Florida. In pre-event preparation, the student teams work with local insurance sales professionals. They served as mentors for each team, helping them develop sales strategy and providing them with multiple opportunities to hone their presentation skills in a real-life sales interview setting.
The Fox student teams received mentorship from Brad Borneman of Body-Borneman Associates, Nick Buckley and Decker Youngman of Brown & Brown, Mat Obenski of TKO Insurance and John Slavinski, BBA ’10, of United Insurance LLC.
“The support from the mentors and the hard work of the students were the reasons why Fox did so well in its first appearance at the IISC,” says Dumm.
The challenge requires students to identify issues that business owners have with their current insurance agents and present the owners with enticing arguments that would encourage them to switch their insurance providers to the student teams. The students gain real-life experience through interacting with these industry experts.
The two teams of Fox students—Haws and Evans, and Staab and McKinney—made it to the final round of the competition, finishing in third and fourth place respectively. Dumm calls them “excellent representatives of the RMI program.”
The competition took advantage of its location in Orlando by offering students the opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse of a world-renowned brand: Disney. The student teams visited Walt Disney World’s Emergency Operations Center for a tour of the facility and listened to a presentation from Disney’s risk management team.
“This competition was a great opportunity to compete and interact with students interested in sales as a career and the insurance sales professionals,” concludes Dumm.