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InVEST, the insurance industry’s premier classroom to career education program, hit a huge milestone this year as it celebrates 40 years since its inception.
“Since it was founded in 1970 at Hollywood High School by the Independent Insurance Agents of Los Angeles, InVEST has been educating students about the insurance industry and how to become better insurance consumers,” says Heather Minkler, InVEST board chair and CEO of Clark-Mortenson Agency, an independent agency in Keene, N.H. “In the last 40 years, InVEST has been hailed as an integral part of growing the industry and expanded to also teach insurance agency and company operations.”
This financial literacy program continues to grow and is currently in more than 180 high schools and community colleges across the country (approximately 5,500 students). InVEST has changed over the years to adapt to evolving teaching styles, technology and trends. Free resources available to InVEST educators include curriculums, computer software, presentation kits and interactive games.
“With more than 60% of the insurance industry’s employees over the age of 45 and the need to find new talent becoming more apparent each year, the InVEST program is critical not only to the future of the independent agency system but to the insurance industry as a whole,” says Robert Rusbuldt, Big “I” president & CEO. “With the average age of an agency principal around 54, the InVEST program is laying the groundwork to replenish our workforce and it may be the program that ultimately saves our industry.”
As a 501(c)(3) educational trust, InVEST benefits from the support of numerous insurance organizations, hundreds of agencies, brokers and volunteers. The program provides the insurance industry with motivated and talented professionals through a support structure of state associations, board members, national staff, teachers and the many industry professionals who work in the field as classroom liaisons.
InVEST promotes insurance education in order to attract individuals to pursue a career in the insurance industry. Each year, the program prepares thousands of students for insurance-related careers with a hands-on curriculum taught in high schools, adult education centers and community colleges. The high school curriculum is a business-education program that utilizes a hands-on approach which simulates an insurance agency and company operations to prepare students for various business careers and create more knowledgeable insurance consumers. At the college level, InVEST is an information-intensive curriculum of risk management and financial services. These courses provide students with a working knowledge of the basics needed to pursue careers in the insurance industry. For more information, go to www.investprogram.org.