To give Risk and Insurance Management (RIM) undergraduate students more exposure to the insurance industry and to equip them with enhanced skill-sets for future career challenges, Lingnan University launched the AR Mentorship Programme on 18 September.
The AR Mentorship Programme is organised by the Department of Finance and Insurance of Lingnan University and supported by the AR Charitable Foundation Scholarship Scheme. It aims to enable students to understand the operations of the risk management and insurance industry, and to develop relevant work skills to fulfil the requirements of employers in the industry. It also facilitates students’ career planning and preparation for joining the insurance industry, and develops their self-motivation to communicate with insurance professionals and explore opportunities in the industry.
At the Programme’s launch ceremony, Prof Shalendra Sharma, Acting Vice-President of Lingnan University, acknowledged the generous support from the AR Charitable Foundation, from which outstanding RIM students can benefit financially to pursue studies at the bachelor or even master degree levels. The mentoring scheme gives all RIM students the opportunity to link up with experts in the insurance profession through regular dialogue and meetings.
During the one-year mentoring period in 2014-2015, 29 RIM student mentees from Lingnan University will be involved in a diverse range of professional development and career counselling activities in insurance including sharing sessions, guest talks, career advising dinner, career training workshops and recruitment talks.
Eight experts and senior executives in the insurance sector will participate in the programme as mentors. At the launch ceremony, Appreciation Certificates were presented to the mentors by Prof Sharma and Mr Jason Wu, Director of AR Charitable Foundation Limited, in recognition of their invaluable contributions to the programme.
In his address, Mr Wu said “the AR Charitable Foundation has been set up to market the insurance industry better. Part of its effort is through the Scholarship Scheme, and part is through the Mentorship Programme. The AR Charitable Foundation has found a perfect partner in Lingnan University. Lingnan University, being a liberal arts institution, has produced well-rounded young men and women who are ready for every challenge.”
Prof Michael Firth, Head of Lingnan University’s Department of Finance and Insurance, gave a brief summary of the recent re-accreditation of its RIM degree by the major professional insurance bodies. These accreditations allow its graduates to ‘fast-track’ their progress towards earning professional qualifications in risk and insurance management.
Lingnan University established the “AR Charitable Foundation Scholarship Scheme” with an earmarked donation of at least HK$10 million early this year. An awardee can receive more than HK$570,000 in scholarships for undergraduate and postgraduate studies.
The scheme also includes internship opportunities for students. During their summer internships this year, students did research on Hong Kong’s health protection system and helped evaluate insurance proposals for products such as mobile phones. Student Cheng Yan-chung said, “After two years of studies and the internship, I’ve realised that insurance-related work covers a lot more than selling policies. For example, we had to use our knowledge and judgement to evaluate and analyse new insurance products.” He added that graduates of the RIM programme at Lingnan could get credit exemptions for exams for many professional qualifications.