First of its kind health insurance agent apprenticeship program to offer paid on-the-job training
Michigan’s Blue Cross Blue Shield and Grand Rapids Community College will launch a paid apprenticeship program designed for high school graduates to access careers in the benefits and health sectors.
The program will provide an overview of the health benefits industry, equipping students with the knowledge and skills to manage general agent licenses, as required by the State Department of Insurance and Financial Services. Michigan. The first cohort of students started in the fall semester 2021.
The program requires 430 hours of active learning.
Blue Cross has led the development of learning with GRCC and West Michigan Works !, with the goal of inspiring a diverse population of students to view this career path as an exciting and financially rewarding opportunity for their future.
“Our goal is to help the region build a qualified pool of licensed individuals who could start becoming agents within the next 14-24 months and even own their own agencies someday,” said Jeff Connolly, senior vice president and President, West Michigan and Upper Peninsula at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan.
GRCC President Bill Pink said the new program is an effort to change the idea of learning, expanding the concept of ‘learn while winning’ to more industries, partnering with other industries. other employers.
“We look at apprenticeships differently,” says Pink. “You think of manufacturing, historically, when you think of learnings. Our college is determined to turn the tide. It is not only about manufacturing, but also about health care. It’s a question of information technology. “
The Medicare Agent Apprenticeship Program will allow students not only to learn the basics of business, but also to gain hands-on experience in the health benefits industry.
GRCC has a long history of working in partnership with the manufacturing, construction and other sectors to help prepare future leaders while helping students jump-start careers immediately.
“This program fits perfectly with GRCC’s model of meeting the needs of the community, employers and students for the future,” says Pink.
Collaboration has been key to developing learning programs, says Amy Lebednick, director of business solutions at West Michigan Works !. Employers, educators and workforce development professionals have worked together to advance the region’s economy in this way.
“These programs allow employers to train people in the skills they need and provide high-demand career paths for individuals in our communities,” said Lebednick.
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a not-for-profit mutual insurance company, which provides health benefits to over 4.7 million members residing in Michigan. Grand Rapids Community College offers learners of all ages the opportunity to earn credit toward degrees or transfer in-demand professional skills leading to rewarding careers. Western Michigan Works! provides proactive and innovative workforce solutions to create a pool of skilled talent that meet the needs of employers in the region.