Professors and supports of Cal State Fullerton's School of Risk Management and Insurance celebrate the insurance program's new identity in November 2019. Cal State Fullerton’s Center for Insurance Studies, the largest risk management and insurance education program in the western U.S., was officially renamed the School of Risk Management and Insurance in late 2019.

The name change marked the culmination of years of effort to expand the focus and reach of the program, which supports undergraduate and graduate education in such fields as insurance sales and management, risk management, and actuarial science.

“It will take our organization to another level,” says Professor of Finance and Director Weili Lu, who has led the insurance education program since its founding in 1998.

Under Lu’s leadership, more than 1,600 Cal State Fullerton graduates have found careers in the insurance industry. That number includes 131 students securing jobs in the field during the 2018-2019 academic year, up from 126 in 2017-2018.

From Center to School: What’s in a Name

In a November 2019 article on the school’s new status in the Insurance Journal, Lu explained, “The new designation will enable the school to integrate all the resources from the university to provide more multi-disciplinary programs or certificates to all students at CSUF or in the CSU system.”

“The school can now, for example, work with the criminal justice department and engineering college on the disaster recovery and claim adjusting program, or it could attract more communication and marketing students into the insurance marketing entrepreneurship programs,” the journal reported.

“Overall the school will be able to provide more qualified potential employees to the industry,” Lu said. “More programs mean more classes and more funding opportunities.” Providing prepared, highly qualified employees for the insurance industry is the overriding goal, and elevating Cal State Fullerton’s insurance program to a school is a step toward fulfilling this goal.

Rising in the Rankings

The School of Risk Management and Insurance has been ranked as a leading insurance education provider. Best’s Review, a monthly insurance magazine, ranked Cal State Fullerton’s risk management and insurance program 15th in the nation.

“It’s the combination of theory with practice that makes us unique,” Lu told the publication. “We are rooted in the industry, and our students can graduate with professional designations that put them one step ahead of others. The industry support to us has been very important. We want to give back to the industry by providing them a qualified next generation of employees.”

Powering Your Insurance Career Through the School of Risk Management and Insurance

If you are a current or prospective Cal State Fullerton student considering a career in risk management or insurance, or are currently in the industry and seeking professional development, Cal State Fullerton’s School of Risk Management and Insurance offers a wide range of programs tailored to your specific needs.