Finance and Insurance Careers

Insurance and financial services are everywhere.

In the U.S., every car and building open to the public is mandated to be insured; businesses insure their property, operations and personnel against loss. Individuals and businesses rely on banks and financial institutions to help them raise and invest the money they need to achieve their goals. With this much insurance and finance in our society, is it any wonder that more than a quarter of the Fortune 100 are financial services companies?

Bowdoin students develop the communication, critical thinking and analytic skills to succeed in any of these roles. Recent Bowdoin alumni work at large, well-known companies such as Prudential, Liberty Mutual, UNUM, Barclays, Wells Fargo, Guggenheim, and Fidelity, as well as small-to-mid sized firms like The Andover Companies, Gen Re, Principal Financial, Cowen, Rothschild & Co, and Silicon Valley Bank.

Sample Career Paths

The insurance and financial services industries hire for the same job functions you would find in other major businesses including sales, marketing, product development, HR, corporate finance and administrative support.


Claims: Representatives investigate insurance claims to determine a company's liability. A claims representative, or Adjuster, might also negotiate a settlement to a claim out of court.

Risk Management: Risk managers help companies limit risk and losses. These could include financial losses, injury to others, property damage, risk to personnel, and fraud or criminal acts.

Actuarial: Actuaries use statistical models to predict uncertain future events such as sickness, accidents, retirement, and property loss, and design creative ways to decrease the impact of bad things happening. Many students enter actuary training programs right out of college, and are encouraged to take and pass their first actuarial exam before applying.

Underwriting: Underwriters review insurance applications and create (or underwrite) insurance policies by deciding what should be covered and how much to charge for it.  Underwriters typically specialize in life, property, or health insurance. 

Sales: Agents and brokers connect people and businesses to the insurance policies they need to protect them if something bad occurs.

Financial Services

Investment Banking: Investment bankers help companies or governments raise capital through debt and equity offerings and provide advisory services on corporate actions such as mergers and acquisitions (M&A), spinoffs, and restructurings.

Sales and Trading: The sales and trading (S&T) division of an investment bank buys and sells securities and other financial instruments as an intermediary on behalf of its clients (mutual funds, hedge funds, pension funds, etc.).

Equity Research: Provides detailed company and industry research reports and makes recommendations on whether to buy, sell, or hold public securities.

Asset Management: Manage the investments of their clients. Their job is to grow a client's portfolio while also mitigating risk. Typical clients include high net worth individuals, governments, and corporations.

Private Equity: Private equity firms make direct investments in private companies, often to gain influence or control over a company’s operations, with a typical investment horizon of between 4-7 years. Investment strategies include leveraged buyout, venture capital, and growth capital.

Private Wealth Management: Private wealth analysts provide advice to clients by analyzing their financial situation and recommending investments to reach the client's goals. 

Meet Alumni

Ruilin Yang '20 interned at a Venture Capitalist firm in Shanghai and Taipei. This rewarding experience allowed her to gain insight into a wide variety of industries that she had never encountered before. This video was originally posted on 12/04/2017