18
January
2022
|
11:46 AM
America/Chicago

Dedicated, Determined IRM Student Earns Prestigious Scholarships

Summary

By Mark Kramer

Susana Gonzalez

Susana Gonzalez is charting her course for success as an Insurance Risk Management (IRM) major at the University of Houston-Downtown’s Marilyn Davies College of Business.

UHD Senior Gonzalez serves as president of the local insurance fraternity Gamma Sigma Iota. She is also preparing to start a career as an underwriter of Commercial Lines for Nationwide Insurance.

And now, her leadership skills, academic performance, dedication and determination have made her the recipient of two prestigious IRM scholarships — UHD’s IRM Center’s Courtney Steves Scholarship and the Securance/Daniels Memorial Scholarship.

The $2,000 Steves Scholarship is named in honor of the late wife of Fred Steves, a founder of the Bachelor of Business Administration in IRM program at UHD and chairman of Myron F. Steves & Company.  The $1,000 Securance Scholarship was created to commemorate company partner L.D. Daniels’ support of the advancement of young insurance professionals.

“Susana is a leader, an outstanding student, and a cheerleader of the Insurance & Risk Management program who inspires others to pursue a career in insurance and risk management,” said Priscilla Oehlert, Director of UHD’s IRM program. “She has a strong work-life balance with being the mother of two young children, her studies and involvement in the Houston insurance community. I’m confident she will have a very successful career in the industry.”

Gonzalez became interested in the insurance industry after meeting several people that worked in the same office complex where she was employed.

“I was working in the oil and gas department of a  firm and we shared a floor with Navigators Insurance, which was bought out by The Hartford,” she said. “It was the interactions with the employees of that company that sparked my interest to pursue a career in insurance.”

As she's setting her sights on earning her degree in May 2022, she is also working toward industry professional designations such as the Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU), Certified Risk Manager (CRM), Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) and others.

“I am humbled and privileged to have been selected for both scholarships,” she said. “They will help me get closer to completing the industry designations I hope to have by graduation.” 

Gonzalez said the connections she has made through UHD’s program have been vital to her success.

“What I like best about my IRM experience is the networking opportunities that have been provided,” she emphasized. “I really enjoy the events we are a part of because of all the amazing people we meet and  interact with. UHD’s program has prepared me for the career opportunities that await me in the insurance industry.”

 

About the University of Houston-Downtown

The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD)—the second-largest university in Houston—has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974.

As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates more than 15,000 students; boasts more than 60,000 alumni and offers 45 bachelor’s, nine master’s degree programs and 16 fully online programs within five colleges (Marilyn Davies College of Business; Humanities & Social Sciences; Public Service; Sciences & Technology; and University College).

For the fourth consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report ranks UHD among universities across the nation for Best Online Criminal Justice Programs (No. 27 and No. 15 for Veterans) and Best Online Bachelor’s Programs.

UHD has the most affordable tuition among four-year universities in Houston and one of the lowest in Texas. U.S. News ranked the University among Top Performers on Social Mobility and a No. 1 ranking as the most diverse institution of higher education in the southern region of the U.S. The University is noted nationally as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, Minority-Serving Institution and Military Friendly School. For more on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit www.uhd.edu.