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AIG Canada employees planted more than 900 trees across Canada.Supplied

While still a university student, Sarah Levine participated in the robust co-op program offered by AIG Insurance Company of Canada (AIG Canada). Even then, Levine says she knew she was with a company committed to helping her realize a rewarding career path.

The co-op program gave Levine exposure to various aspects of AIG Canada’s business and put her in good stead when she joined the company full time five years ago.

More recently, Levine participated in AIG Canada’s 12-month underwriting excellence program, which is an interim career development initiative for those who have been with the company for about five years and who are looking to hone their leadership skills.

The program includes master classes with members of AIG Canada’s leadership team and places a strong emphasis on forging ongoing mentorship relationships.

“With all these programs in place, it really feels like leaders and managers are trying to raise everyone up,” says Levine, now a senior underwriter. “You are supported in finding your niche and getting the most out of your career.”

Levine also appreciates the emphasis AIG places on both work-life balance and giving back to the community.

Until recently, even new recruits started with a generous 26 annual paid days off which they could use for vacation, illness or personal matters. Starting in 2023, the company added seven more paid days off, immediately preceding statutory holidays.

“That just reflects the importance they place on work-life balance,” says Levine. “It’s great to be able to enjoy those longer weekends with friends and family.”

Employees also receive an additional two paid days a year to volunteer in the community and are regularly presented with opportunities to get involved in ways that reflect their personal interests and passions.

For example, Levine, who loves spending time with animals, has volunteered with local humane societies. She has also joined her colleagues in providing lunches for families in need at Ronald McDonald House.

“That’s one I really appreciated because it’s a good reminder of what people are going through and how you might be able to help,” says Levine.

President and CEO Pete Walker says career development, work-life balance and community outreach are all priorities young people tell recruiters they value when looking at potential employers.

“Young people do their research and want to understand how a company values its employees and interacts with the larger community,” says Walker. “Over the long term, they also want more clarity about their career path.”

In response, he adds, the company has become much more deliberate about working with younger employees to help map out a career path and provide the support and skills they will need to achieve their aspirations.

“We want people to think broadly across all of AIG Canada, and potentially globally as well, in terms of where their careers could take them,” he says.

Mentorship is a key part of that, he adds.

“Mentoring across the whole organization is something we definitely encourage. And part of that is a direct result of listening to our younger team members.”

Levine appreciates that, five years in, she is now part of that mentorship culture.

She is currently helping to interview and select new recruits for AIG Canada’s co-op program and providing successful applicants with advice.

“I have a good perspective because I went through the program not that long ago,” she says. “It’s so great to see these students start in the co-op and then progress in their careers, just like I have.”

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Advertising feature produced by Canada’s Top 100 Employers, a division of Mediacorp Canada Inc. The Globe and Mail’s editorial department was not involved.

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