A message from our summer intern

This summer, Eckburg hired its first ever summer intern! We were happy to welcome Machesney Park native and Harlem High School graduate Brendyn Ford, who was a rising senior at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. Brendyn is an Economics and Business Administration major at UWSP and a member of the football team. He wanted to share his thoughts about the summer he had working at Eckburg Insurance Group.

My first week at Eckburg can be summed up in two words: stressful and complicated. Prior to starting my internship, I knew absolutely nothing about insurance. I didn’t even know what an insurance quote was. In my defense, I am a Business Administration and Economics double major, so I never had a college professor teach me the basics of insurance. And as I write this blog, I realize there is still so much for me to learn; I’ve hardly scratched the surface. After talking to my coworkers, many also said they knew  very little about insurance before entering the industry. So at least I’m not alone in that regard.

When I began the internship, I learned why insurance is important and the basic components of automobile and homeowners policies. Mark Schaer gave me a crash course lecture on liability insurance, personal injury protection or medical payments insurance, uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, collision and comprehensive coverage, dwelling protection, other structures protection, additional living expenses coverage, personal property coverage, and common home endorsements. Did you get a headache reading all of that? Try learning all of that in three hours. As I said, my first week was not easy.

In addition to gaining insurance experience, I was doing marketing activities. Early on in my internship, I was tasked with generating several mailing lists  to individuals and businesses in the Rockford area to garner new clients. I have learned some marketing material in college, but I never actually did a real life marketing assignment. I was excited to start my first assignment, but this assignment was not nearly as fun as I was hoping it would be. It was a lot of researching company websites and compiling a huge spreadsheet full of names, addresses, and phone numbers.

However, after completing the assignment, something odd happened: I was happy. You see, I wasn’t in a class lecture with a spiral and pen, but I physically completed a task for a great company. An individual goes to college in hopes of landing a great job, and I received a taste of what it felt like to achieve that goal. It was just a hint of a taste, but I felt as though I was finally reaping the fruits of my labor.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the great people I got to work with. Eckburg’s mantra is “treat people the way you want to be treated”, and I felt that mantra vibrate through every single employee. Everyone is kind and polite, and it’s not a fake kindness, but a genuine one. For example, the staff will show up to work early to decorate a fellow coworker’s work area for his or her birthday. They even planned a going-away party for me. Everyone in the office feels valued, and there is a strong comradery in this office, the same comradery I experience on my football team. It is truly something special.

Now that my internship is completed, I feel a bit nostalgic for the time I spent at Eckburg. The staff has become a second family to me, and it is hard to say farewell to the great people that made this summer special. I think it is more of a “see you later.” I sure hope our paths cross again, and I would be proud to become a full-time member of the Eckburg team.

To the clients of Eckburg Insurance Group, you can rest assured that you are in good hands. To the staff of Eckburg, thank you for welcoming me with open arms. Keep being awesome, and I will miss you all.

Eckburg Insurance Group is the largest home and auto insurance provider in northern Illinois. We can cover all your home, auto, business, and life insurance needs. Our dedicated staff, made up almost entirely of men and women who were raised in our community, works tirelessly everyday to keep you protected. Call us today at (815) 877-4100 or click here for a quote!