With UCF set to launch an MBA program with an emphasis in risk management and insurance in Fall 2024, Ronald Piccolo has been named associate dean for strategic initiatives in the College of Business, executive director for the new risk management and insurance education program, and special assistant to the provost for Volusia County, where the program will be located.

“Ron is the perfect person to build the strong corporate partnerships necessary to build a successful risk management and insurance program in Daytona,” says Paul Jarley, dean of UCF College of Business. “He has an uncommon ability to bring groups together in ways that lead to a shared vision that drives success.”

Ronald Piccolo

The risk management and insurance-focused MBA was created to address the growing need for talent in the insurance industry. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has forecasted that over the next 15 years, 50% of the current insurance industry workforce will retire, leaving more than 400,000 positions unfilled.

“The insurance industry is expected to face many challenges in the next decade such as inflation, interest rate volatility, a global economic recession, climate change, pressure on traditional valuation models and the emergence of InsurTech (Insurance Technology). Plus, the labor market is tight and demands on the workforce continue to evolve,” says Piccolo, who joined UCF in 2005 and is the Galloway Professor of Management. “We hope UCF can play its part in supporting such a critical industry for our state.”

With more than 18 years of experience in higher education, Piccolo will lead UCF’s expansion in Volusia County, the epicenter of Florida’s insurance industry, and the development of educational programming that emphasizes insurtech.

The College of Business is no stranger to launching innovative programs. In 2021, UCF created the first Master of Science in FinTech in Florida.

“There is clear and compelling alignment between Volusia County’s economic interests and UCF’s areas of expertise,” Piccolo says. “We are excited to integrate business, engineering and computer science to develop Florida’s workforce, support the insurance industry’s evolution and develop a national hub for InsurTech.”

The risk management and insurance offering is designed for working professionals who wish to pursue an accredited MBA program while continuing their careers. The program will be taught in a part-time, cohort format on Saturdays at UCF’s Daytona campus. Students will take 10 core MBA courses plus three specialty courses focused on risk management, insurance and data analysis, including two new courses: The Fundamentals of Risk Management & Insurance, and Property/Casualty Insurance Contract Analysis. Applications are being accepted now. Go to business.ucf.edu to learn more and to apply.