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Spring 2021 Advisory

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The Thinker statue outside of Philosophy Hall.

Insurance Management

Ensure the Future

The world is rapidly changing and the business of insurance is changing along with it. Climate change, the explosion of data, advancements in technology — these are just some of the disruptive elements that the insurance industry is converting into opportunities for developing new markets and enhancing the client experience. Columbia University’s Master’s in Insurance Management prepares a new generation of professionals to lead the transformation of insurance business management, blending advanced industry knowledge, strategic and operational expertise, and an appetite for turning disruption into profitable innovations. 

The proactive leadership of an insurance enterprise in today’s dynamic environment requires a holistic understanding of the relationships between key functions such as finance, data analytics, and underwriting. Broad knowledge will help professionals balance traditional business methodologies with innovative strategies to deliver timely risk solutions like cyber and parametric insurance that will help their insureds—and themselves—succeed.  The courses are delivered by respected industry professionals who come from (re)insurers, brokers, startups, law firms, financial institutions, and risk management associations.

This 16-month program is specially designed for online instruction to accommodate working professionals, and provides a problem-based learning environment, so that students can apply what they learn today in the office tomorrow. Ensure the future of insurance—engage our academic and professional network through Columbia University’s Insurance Management master’s program, the only program of its kind in the Ivy League.

Fast Facts

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50% will retire Up to 50% of the current insurance workforce will start retiring within 10-15 years, creating a demand for technical knowledge and expertise.
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1.7 MB per second 1.7 megabytes of data will be generated each second of every day for every person by 2020, with broad potential to shift business strategies.
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$3 Billion Investors were on track to commit over $3 Billion in InsurTech businesses in 2019, providing more insurance business options and partners than ever.​
Program Options
Program Option Required Experience Course Formats Time Commitment
Master of Professional Studies (part-time)

Five years of professional experience

Online asynchronous instruction

Four consecutive terms

Applied research project

Two in-person residencies*

*New students will begin the program with an online orientation on August 20 and 21, 2020. Later in the Fall, domestic students will participate in an in-person residency, to the extent possible, on Columbia’s campus in New York City. The second in-person residency will take place at the end of the program. International students are welcome to attend the in-person residencies. An online version of the residencies is available only for international students who cannot attend in person.

At a Glance


The Master of Professional Studies in Insurance Management is for career professionals who want to accelerate their advancement to leadership positions or broaden their expertise in the industry. It accommodates both professionals already working in insurance and those looking to make a career change. The program is part-time, online, and instruction is asynchronous to accommodate working professionals. It consists of 10 required courses taken over four consecutive semesters (approximately 16 months, total, including a summer session), and two on-campus, in-person residencies, to the extent possible, prior to the start of and at the conclusion of the program. Only fall entry is available.

In This Master’s Program, You Will…

  • Develop broad expertise in the global insurance industry that will prepare you for leadership positions. 
  • Understand the cross-functionalities of an insurance enterprise, the keys to profitable underwriting and claims control, the importance of maintaining compliance standards, and how to satisfy the interests of stakeholders.
  • Recognize how government regulation, social interests, and other external factors influence business decisions.
  • Apply critical and analytical thinking to the executive decision-making process and prioritize among different disciplines.
  • Receive one-on-one mentoring from program faculty and staff, who are top experts in the field 
  • Learn how to leverage data and technology advancements to enhance and improve traditional business methodologies.
  • Learn how to identify new market opportunities to drive enterprise growth.
  • Develop and deliver strategies that align with the needs of insurance organizations operating in an increasingly complex business environment.
  • Apply what you learn to formulate your personal path to career success.
  • Be eligible for CPCU® self-reported Continuing Education (CE) credit.

Program Features Include...

  • An elite, cutting-edge curriculum that integrates emerging issues with a situation- and problem-based learning structure.
  • A preeminent scholar-practitioner faculty that includes seasoned insurance industry leaders who incorporate their multidisciplinary insights and real-world experiences.
  • A part-time, easy-to-follow online course of study ideal for working professionals. The online coursework is supplemented by two in-person sessions to connect students with their peers, faculty, guest speakers, and other thought leaders for networking and collaboration.
  • Exclusive access to a robust professional network of corporate insurance partners, thought leaders, faculty, and peers, as well as career development services and professional development opportunities.
  • A collegial, supportive environment and strong peer network cultivated by the program’s cohort structure.
  • An Applied Research Project that empowers students to select a real-world business challenge and develop strategies for implementing responsive product or service solutions.

Who Should Apply?

  • Insurance Professionals: Insurance professionals with 5+ years of experience in insurance seeking career advancement
  • Career Changers: Professionals with 5+ years of relevant work experience who want to pursue a managerial role in the insurance industry
  • Third-Party Service Providers: Professionals with 5+ years of experience at third-party service providers including consulting, accounting, and law firms
  • The ideal candidates for this program include: Senior Underwriter, Account Manager, Assistant Underwriting Manager, Product Specialist, Underwriting Quality Review Auditor, Operations Manager/Leader, Assistant General Counsel, Business Development/Relationship Manager, IT/Business Analyst, Actuary, Claims Manager, Account Executive/Client Executive, Producer, and Placement Manager.


Sample Courses

  • Technology and Data Analytics
  • Insurance Risk Management
  • The Role of Finance in Insurance
  • Emerging Risk and Insurance Topics
  • View All Courses

Career Outlook

Entrance into the Insurance Management program includes access to the Career Design Lab, a hub that connects students with the resources and relationships to pursue meaningful work.

Equipped with knowledge, skills and Columbia’s extensive network, graduates will have a competitive advantage for advancement. The program prepares graduates for leadership roles at insurance companies, brokerages, and agencies, or consulting and insurtech firms.

Connect with Us

Learn more about Insurance Management at Columbia University School of Professional Studies, or contact the program admissions counselor.

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Study with Us

As admissions to our program are highly competitive, we encourage you to apply as soon as possible. Learn more about the application process, deadlines, and requirements.

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