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An inside view of Zurich North America’s apprenticeship program

February 5, 2019

A graduate of our first apprentice class shares how it helped him discover unexpected opportunities in the insurance industry.

Zurich North America is proud to be one of the founding member companies of Rework America. Our goal is to come up with innovative solutions to develop and retain high quality talent, while giving more Americans an opportunity to thrive in the digital economy.

Dane Lyons, graduate of Zurich North America’s inaugural apprenticeship class, talks about what an innovative solution like our apprenticeship program is like. Dane currently works in our underwriting department.


I never thought, “I really wish I had a job in insurance.” However, as I struggled to find a way to go back to school while I was still working, a chance conversation changed my path, my perceptions about insurance, and my future.

I was introduced to the Zurich apprenticeship program through an advisor at Harper College and my immediate thought was that I didn’t want another sales job. That’s what I understood about insurance – a very shallow opinion based only on the countless recruiters calling me to become an agent. The apprenticeship program though, seemed different to me. Something told me this is an opportunity and I decided to take a chance on Zurich, just like Zurich would be taking a chance on me.

Since the day I was accepted into the program, I have been exposed to an incredible industry right in my backyard that previously I had never given a second thought. I really feel that if more people knew the inner workings of an insurance company, they would line up for a chance to join the industry. Thankfully, the apprenticeship program allowed me to see different areas and countless different opportunities within a single organization.

When I started the program, I didn’t really know what to expect, but two years later so much has changed. I now have a college degree that I earned through the apprenticeship program; I have made the easy decision to continue my education; I get to spend quality time with my family that I couldn’t in my previous job; and I have a career that with hard work and dedication is limitless. If there is advice I could give to someone considering the apprenticeship program, I would say jump in with both feet. You will be rewarded.

While I didn’t wake up one day and think to myself, “I really wish I had a job in insurance,” now I wake up every day excited that I do.

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