January 10, 2018 at 4:17 pm

Career Corner | Math Major’s Internship Leads to Job with Progressive

Jarrett Quanrud, portrait

Jarrett Quanrud

by Kristin Distel

Jarrett Quanrud ’18 spent the summer of 2017 interning with National Interstate Insurance—and finalizing his career plans and interests.

A senior majoring in math and minoring in finance, Quanrud describes the internship as exactly the type of experience students need in order to determine the career they want to pursue.

“This internship experience got me to where I wanted to be,” he explains. Indeed, after completing his internship, Quanrud accepted a job as a quantitative analyst with Progressive, a position that will begin in summer 2018.

Underwriting, Data Analysis, Research and Development

Quanrud’s paid internship with National Interstate Insurance specifically focused on commercial lines insurance, particularly passenger lines. He completed several useful and interesting projects that, he found, helped him land his post-graduation job.

One of Quanrud’s several projects involved underwriting accounts based on client information provided by his employers.

“Underwriting is a huge process,” he remarks. “I had to consider not only how much to charge but also any things the client might need to change in order to be insured.”

A significant amount of Quanrud’s work also involved research and meticulous analysis. He completed an extensive project that required him to gather information on five different categories of personal injury protection law for each state. Though this task was tedious, he notes, it was also a rich opportunity to familiarize himself with case law and the way it varies from one state to another.

Quanrud also assessed data analytics with project managers, a task in which they examined 30-40 customers and completed data analysis to determine the customers’ profits.

“In terms of my future career, this experience with advanced data analysis was the biggest help,” he notes.

Additionally, in conjunction with other National Interstate Insurance summer interns, Quanrud gained a great deal of hands-on experience with Research and Development. The group of interns created an R & D team and conducted research on how such a team would be integrated into the company.

Their examination included interviewing managers and asking what each of them would hope to gain by instituting an R & D team. The project culminated in a group presentation in front of the company’s managers, as well as creating and presenting a budget.

Advice for Internship Seekers

Quanrud provides several helpful suggestions to other OHIO students who are looking for the perfect internship—and for the ideal career opportunity.

“Really try to dissect the company while you’re at an internship,” he states. “Look at their benefits packages. Look at the upper management and their inner workings. This will give you a sense of the type of company you want to work for after graduation,” Quanrud says. He also suggests asking in advance whether the internship provides housing.

Quanrud further advises students to talk to their peers after completing an internship. “I think this further helps to compare your experience to more of an industry medium, rather than a case study type of experience,” he explains.

Most importantly, potential interns should advocate for themselves and seek out great opportunities. Quanrud notes that students need to do the work of finding and applying with companies that are especially suited to the students’ interests. Quanrud completed a variety of interviews with other companies and ultimately determined that National Interstate Insurance was the best fit for his experience and goals.

National Interstate Insurance also sent a recruiter to Ohio University’s campus; as president of the university’s actuarial group, Quanrud worked closely with the recruiter. “I kept in contact after his visit, and I think that helped me stand out from other applicants,” Quanrud states.

Gaining ‘A Leg Up’ at OHIO

Going into his internship, Quanrud had already obtained introductory knowledge about the inner workings of the insurance industry. He specifically cites the courses he took with Mark Snider and Jim Fuller, who teach at OHIO and own an insurance company in Athens, as helpful in preparing him for “the real world of insurance.”

“The knowledge I gained from their courses really gave me a leg up,” Quanrud says. “I already knew good deal of insurance terminology going into my internship. I could have a conversation about insurance with interviewers, which really helped me secure my internship.”

Quanrud also emphasizes the importance of teaching oneself and finding ways to gain a competitive edge. “I taught myself Excel,” Quanrud notes, “and it really paid off both for my internship and my capstone project. The combination of Excel knowledge and my internship experience is making my senior year easier.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *