Augie becomes first in the nation to offer income insurance

Brett Kuras

Augustana announced a new program late summer of this year called “Test Income Insurance.” This program takes effect for the newest class of transfer students who applied between July 1 and Aug. 23 of this year. 

The new program was started by Dream Insurance, who originally reached out to Augustana to create a new type of program that benefitted both them and the school. This type of program is something that the nation has never seen before at an academic institution and may be the kickstarter for other institutions to create programs to entice students to attend.

The new program allows transfer students to be income insured after they graduate. This means that if a student majors in business with a national average salary of $60,000 and only makes $52,000 their first year out of college, the student will be insured the difference of 8,000. For next year, if the student makes $58,000, they will be given $2,000, as explained in Forbes magazine. This will go on for five years and will be given to the student in a lump sum at the end of that time. The program only applies to domestic transfers, and it is currently not offered to international students. 

The program, although it only has 10 students, has already received national attention from media outlets such as Forbes. An article written by Forbes magazine about this program now has over 5,000 views. 

Kent Barnds, the executive vice president for external relations, was responsible for promoting the program to new students, which ended up bringing 10 new students to Augustana. 

“We had actually been in contact with Dream Insurance … for about two years” Barnds said. “Here at Augustana we are constantly coming up with new things to be innovative and stand out from the rest to really show what makes Augustana so great. We are still determining if 10 students is a huge success or a mediocre one.” 

As the new program takes off and guarantees some financial safety for new students, previous transfer students that came to Augie before the program feel a bit left out. 

Junior Jared Deppe transferred here his sophomore year and understands that he does not qualify. However, he wishes that he had the same opportunity.

“I came here for a good education, and while I am more than happy with Augustana and everything they offer, I do feel a bit left out. Understandably, places change and new programs are created. I wish the new students the best with the program and hope other schools follow suit to entice more students,” Deppe said. 

Wayde Eyerly, the CEO of Dream Insurance, told Forbes in July of 2021 that he is excited to work with Augustana. We couldn’t be more excited to partner with Augustana College on this pilot. It’s a university that prides itself on curiosity and innovation,” Eyerly told Forbes.