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Making Waves in the Insurance Field

Jessup alumni are transforming the workplace, building their careers, strengthening relationships, and reaching the world for Christ. Kyle Smith is an alumnus who’s making waves in the insurance field. Kyle graduated in 2008 with a BA in Business Administration and a minor in Bible and Theology. He was recently named a member of the 2020 Executive Council of New York Life Insurance Company. Only 18% of New York Life’s 12,000 licensed agents are given this designation for their sales achievement. Kyle graciously took some time to reflect on his journey and experiences at Jessup and tell us a little bit about his recent career highlights. It’s a pleasure to welcome Kyle to our Q&A discussion today. 

What was your journey to Jessup like?

I started going to a Christian school in 3rd grade and graduated from Forest Lake Christian School in 2003. I played varsity soccer for three years and competitive soccer year-round. I went to American River College and played soccer there as well. After one year, I decided to take a break from soccer and focus on school. Halfway through that next semester, I knew I still wanted to play. I was invited to an open tryout at Jessup. I accepted a scholarship to play at Jessup and played for three years.

Why did you choose Jessup? 

Soccer brought me to Jessup, but the friendships and teachers made my years there so amazing.

Why did you choose your specific major/career path? 

Growing up, my best friend and I had a landscape company. It started out as weed eating and cleaning up yards, then quickly turned into full maintenance and installation of new yards. I loved being my own boss and seeing my hard work pay off. I did not know what kind of business I wanted to run or own, but I knew I wanted it to be mine. That is why I chose a business administration degree.

How did Jessup support your academic goals?

Honestly, I was never a student who loved school. I kept grades so that I could play soccer. However, once I got into my business classes, I really enjoyed the real-world application. I learned how to write a business plan, how to read and understand profit and loss statements for business, and the power of compounding interest and dollar-cost averaging. I still use these skills today in my financial advising practice.

You were recently named a member of the 2020 Executive Council of New York Life Insurance Company. Can you tell me a little more about this prestigious designation?

I started my financial advising practice in November 2010 when I partnered with New York Life. New York Life recognizes their advisors on their fiscal year growth with new and current clients. I have achieved Quality Council every year since 2013. Last year, we achieved new heights by qualifying for Executive Council and we’re currently on track to meet the same goal this year. To me, this achievement is a direct reflection of the quality of our current clients and the service we provide.

What did you love most about your time at Jessup?

I attended Jessup because they gave me an opportunity to play soccer at a high level. What I took away was the lifelong friendships with amazing teammates and other students.

Kyle lives in Grass Valley, CA with his wife Tracy, who played basketball and volleyball at Jessup and graduated in 2009. Together, they’re raising two children, Rylie (9) and Jaxson (6).

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