ECU News Services


Grant Aids Program in Risk Management and Insurance

East Carolina University's newly launched concentration in risk management and insurance has received a grant from the Independent Insurance Agents of North Carolina to help fund program operations as well as new scholarships. IIANC board members and staff members presented more than $40,000 to the College of Business at the office of Hooker & Buchanan in Greenville.

The IIANC has also pledged to fund student travel to conferences and related field trips.

 Frederick Niswander, dean of the College of Business, said, “We are deeply grateful to the IIANC for its investment in our students and programs. Its support will help us provide superior instruction in risk and insurance and will also provide numerous opportunities for our students.”

Established in fall 2009, the risk management and insurance concentration provides instruction in the growing field of insurance. It prepares students for employment in three major areas: insurance agency work, insurance company careers, and risk management. The program is directed by Brenda Wells in the College of Business.

"The IIANC has generously funded our program here at ECU, and for that we are very grateful," Wells said. "But their support for the program hasn't stopped with an initial gift ‒ they continue to provide the resources we need to attract the best student talent. We're poised to become a nationally recognized program in the near future as a result."

Wells said in less than one year, ECU's insurance concentration has grown to more than 30 students, thanks to support and encouragement from the IIANC.  

A professional trade association representing nearly 1,000 independent insurance agencies and branches across the state, the IIANC's mission is to advocate for independent insurance agents and to satisfy the business and professional needs of its members.

The IIANC has a long history of supporting higher education and recently completed a program of endowed scholarships at colleges and universities across the state. The group also established a faculty chair for Risk Management and Insurance at ECU in 2007.

This story appeared originally in the Oct. 29, 2010 issue of Pieces of Eight. An archived version of that issue is available at