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Former Marine and Insurance Professional Todd Shepersky on Learning to Push for Change

Todd Shepersky is an Underwriting Manager at Farm Family, a group of insurance companies headquartered in Glenmont, New York. He is also a part of the inaugural cohort of Columbia's Master's in Insurance Management program. He has nearly twenty years of experience in the insurance industry, and at Farm Family, he leads the company's Northeast and Large Account Underwriting teams. Shepersky served as a Corporal in a small boat infantry unit in the U.S. Marine Corps, and earned his B.S. in Mathematics from Washington State University. He recently shared thoughts on his time studying at Columbia. 

Being a student in Columbia’s Insurance Management program has been an incredible experience! The faculty come to the program with years of unique experiences and share that knowledge through their lectures, coursework, and other conversations. We’ve heard from several guest speakers from around the industry as well, which has created an information-packed curriculum. If that wasn’t enough, the program creates a collaborative setting involving group projects where we (the students) have the opportunity of working with and learning from each other. Through these projects, I’ve been able to work with other amazing professionals from around the country and world.

As a professional with nearly 20 years in the insurance industry, this program has invigorated me and pushed me to think differently. More than anything, it has led to me thinking more about our future, the many challenges we’ll face, and how our industry may help to provide innovative solutions. We’re at an exciting time in the evolution of the insurance industry and I can say with no hesitation that Columbia’s program has prepared me to be in an active role pushing for change, rather than being an observer. I would encourage anyone, regardless of where they may be in their career, to consider this phenomenal educational program.

In addition to the thought-provoking coursework and conversations between students and faculty, there have been several instances when a week's topics have led to me reaching out to others within my organization. The program was the impetus for me connecting with various leaders throughout my organization and having conversations I hadn't engaged in previously. These conversations provided the opportunity for me to learn more about our organization, and to share a bit of what I'm learning through the program's coursework. This was an unexpected benefit that I hadn't considered initially, and it has added to my professional growth during the program.