Name and what you do at Aspen
My name is Iona Primavera, I’m an Assistant Underwriter for the Casualty Reinsurance team based in London.
What was your pre-Aspen background?
I was a recent graduate of French and Italian at the University of Bristol.
Where are you from?
I was born in London, moved to Bristol for university and have also spent time studying abroad in France and Italy as part of my course.
How did you learn about insurance, why did you want to work in the industry?
When I was at university, I didn’t have much exposure to insurance or what a career in the insurance would look like. After graduation, I did an internship at an insurance broker, which really opened my eyes to the industry. Prior to that, I didn’t have much experience or exposure to insurance, which I think is quite common for a lot of young people! But there is an incredible range of roles available in insurance, so there is really something for everyone. It’s also a very a social industry which makes it an enjoyable place to work with a good work/life balance.
How has your time been at Aspen?
My time here has been very positive, I’ve really enjoyed my experience at Aspen. I’ve learned so much since I first joined the graduate programme and I have met a lot of really great people.
How did you join and into what position?
I joined Aspen as a Reinsurance Underwriting Graduate in September 2018. I’ve just come off the Aspen Graduate Scheme after 2 years at the company spent rotating within different Reinsurance teams.
Your journey within the organisation
Highlights and challenges
I didn’t know much about reinsurance when I joined, so I felt like I had a lot to learn as it can be very different from the insurance side of the business. But everyone was very welcoming, friendly and open and I felt very comfortable asking lots of questions – which helped a lot.
Why would you encourage young people to apply for early careers at Aspen and what advice would you give?
I think this is a really exciting industry to be in, especially for young people, as it is going through a lot of change at the moment in terms of modernisation and utilising new technology. I’d strongly encourage young people to look into it and apply for early careers at Aspen, it is a great place to be!
Anything you know now that you’d have liked to have known earlier?
Never be afraid to ask questions!
What are your career plans for the next five years?
I hope to keep progressing in my underwriting career, continuing to develop my skills and experience and work up to becoming an underwriter.
What do you hope to achieve?
I hope to never stop learning and continue to develop my skills and experience. I’m also working through my Advanced Diploma in Insurance (ACII) qualification, which is a qualification that people working in the insurance industry can undertake. It involves exams and coursework but is definitely worthwhile for your learning and development and I’d encourage anyone starting in the industry to undertake it.