Jade Weaver’s financial path to a college degree was uncertain until she received scholarship support from the Argo Foundation and Argo Group.
Weaver is set to graduate in May 2021 from Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with a Bachelor of Commerce in management and a minor in psychology. She is the 2019 recipient of the Association of Bermuda International Companies (ABIC) education award sponsored by Argo, one of the corporate sponsors of ABIC Education Awards.
Head of Argo Insurance Bermuda Bill Wharton offered her an internship that enabled Weaver to work in several areas, including professional liability, reinsurance, and CAT modeling. She had returned to Bermuda in the spring semester because of COVID, and her internship was remote.
“I was very fond of saying in calls, ‘Just give it to Jade,’” he says. “She is everything you want in an intern. Frankly, she is everything you want in an employee.”
Providing scholarships and internships goes a long way toward meeting the need for new talent in Bermuda’s insurance industry, Wharton says.
Bermuda scholarships: More than funding
Argo began sponsoring the award for $20,000 a year in 2017. To qualify, ABIC scholarship recipients must be Bermudian, have Bermudian status or a Permanent Resident’s Certificate (PRC), and demonstrate an interest in working in the international business sector.
Weaver earned her associate degree in business administration with assistance from Knowledge Quest, an Argo Foundation-supported scholarship program designed to help Bermuda students earn two-year degrees. The ABIC scholarship helped Weaver attend and complete college at a four-year university, something local students must leave Bermuda to do, as the island has no four-year universities. The support from both scholarships has made all the difference for Weaver.
“It allows us to get a foot in the door with this industry, network and get to know the process of the industry within Bermuda and learn all different aspects and views of people,” she says. “It is more than just funding.”
Helping develop future insurance professionals
“It’s important that we offer these Bermuda scholarships and introduce people into the industry, because we need the talent,” Wharton says. “I look around the office, and there are a lot of people in their mid- to late-50s. In 10 years’ time, they’ll be gone.”
He is particularly interested in nurturing interest in the industry among locals.
“We need to develop Bermudian talent,” he says. “I think it’s very important that over time the majority of people working here in the industry are Bermudian, all the way up to the C-suite.”
Weaver, who has competed with Bermuda Women’s National Volleyball Team since the age of 16, intends to earn insurance designations and plans to return to Bermuda at some point.
“All of my family is there, so I think Bermuda is always going to be home for me,” she says. “The insurance world in Bermuda is so illustrious, and there are so many opportunities for recent graduates there.”
Learn more about careers at Argo Group.