Risk is a part of our everyday lives. When we walk out the door, invest in stock, purchase a piece of real estate — you name it — we are exposed to risk. A risk management masters degree teaches students how to plan for and respond to various risks in today’s business and insurance world. In a master’s degree program, students will pursue various topics, such as labor laws, industrial safety, environmental hazards, and medical malpractice to research and analyze in their master’s theses. After graduation, graduate students may be qualified to apply for jobs in insurance agencies and other risk management careers. Critical-thinking and problem-solving skills are two of the most important aptitudes needed to succeed in this type of degree program.
Why a Master’s Degree?
Though a bachelor’s degree in risk management introduces students to all the basic skills they need in risk management careers, a master’s degree allows students to specialize in specific subjects within risk management. In fact, a master’s degree in risk management is more valuable than ever before, since many insurance companies have increased the qualifications and expertise they expect from their employees. Most courses in risk management degree programs feature topics in risk analysis, decision analysis, loss prevention, financial auditing, security theory, and more. After graduation, students often end up working as financial analysts, claims adjusters, and insurance coordinators. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), financial analysts are expected to have an undergraduate degree, and sometimes even a master’s degree. Claims adjusters, however, are only required to have a high school diploma.
Getting into a Master’s Degree Program
To be considered for the master’s degree program of your choice, schools will require students to submit proof of their academic history and aptitude, gleaning whether they will be a good fit for their program. Nearly all master’s degree programs require:
- Bachelor’s degree in risk management or related subject
- Relevant work experience
- Current resume
- Academic and/or professional letters of recommendation
- Passing GMAT or GRE scores
Inside a Risk Management Master’s Degree Program
Risk management master’s degree programs may be completed in anywhere from three to five years, depending on whether the student is enrolled at a full-time status. The program itself consists of courses that discuss various specialties within the risk management field. More than likely, students will also be required to research and write a thesis or partake in a capstone project. Risk management internships are also highly encouraged for students to pursue.
Online colleges and distance learning programs are an alternative option to earning a degree. An online risk management masters degree is ideal degree for busy professionals who want to enhance their educational foundation. Most of the time, students are allowed to submit course assignments and exams through online platforms like Blackboard, or through email submissions to professors or faculty. If you think an online degree might be right for you, do your research and find a program that suits all your needs.
What’s Next for Risk Management Master’s Degree Holders?
Insurance companies and an array of other industries seek out risk management professionals to define, analyze, and evaluate various risks. After finishing their master’s degree program, students may be qualified to apply for mid-level and high-level careers in risk management, as per their work experience. Financial analysts, claims adjusters, and insurance coordinators are just some of the many positions risk management graduates may be able to attain.
According to the BLS, financial analysts make an average of $75,000 a year. On the other hand, claims adjusters make about $59,000 a year. The BLS reports that these two careers are expected to experience a growth over the course of the next few years.