NEM 2024 Partner Profile: CNA Insurance

Harmonizing Passions: Engineering a Career Path in Insurance

By: Tanguy Rugamba, Risk Control Trainee

Growing up, I was curious about how machines worked, which lead to my interest in pursuing engineering in my studies. However during university, I found myself drawn to business and finance.  I was fascinated by how businesses operated; spending my free time reading finance books and watching entrepreneurial shows such as ‘Shark Tank’ and ‘Dragon’s Den’ for inspiration. As graduation approached, I was conflicted by the direction of my career path. Although my passion for engineering remained rampant, I still found the financial sector intriguing. With regards to my ideal career, these two interests would merge into one distinct path.

The answer arose unexpectedly two months before I graduated, at an Engineering career fair organized by the Ontario Society of Professional Engineers. Among the many engineering companies, one booth stood out: CNA Canada. I was caught off guard to see a financial corporation at an engineering event. Curious, I inquired for more information, learning about the role of risk control consultants –professionals who assess and identify uncontrolled exposures that threaten the assets, profits and the success of organizations.

This didn’t sound like any other job at the career fair. It sounded like my golden ticket to get involved with the action behind-the-scenes across the business spectrum. The role would be broader than just discovering risks; it would be an insider’s look at how businesses operate from the ground-up and would span across numerous industries. My interest peaked at the fact that I would be interacting with business owners who shape our economy, whilst also applying engineering principles to unravel the complexities of their machinery and processes for risk identification. The insurance industry’s vibrant social scene was also compelling, with numerous events that can help to expand my network.

Convinced that this career was a match, I moved to Toronto after graduation. I joined CNA Canada as a Risk Control Trainee. With support from their Human Resources team and my new colleagues including Jamie Weston,  Head of Risk Control in Canada, I felt welcomed, included and equipped to succeed in my new role.

My learnings skyrocketed under the mentorship of Samuel Jayapalan, Director Risk Control. I learned the ins-and-outs from fire protection to product liability. Shadowing Samuel on risk assessments was another invaluable experience as it enhanced my ability to identify risks and develop important soft skills.

To further accelerate my development, I participated in CNA’s Risk Control Associate Program, an eight-week training curriculum that provides a deep dive into risk control principles and the insurance industry. Completing this program equipped me with the knowledge and skills to conduct risk assessments independently and confidently. Now, as I complete risk assessments in the field, I reflect on my career journey. I’m grateful to be part of an organization like CNA Canada, that invests heavily on training talent.

As an engineer, insurance is a highly rewarding career path; bringing new learning opportunities daily. It almost feels like living through the real-world version of the TV show, ‘How It’s Made’. My transition from an engineering student to a risk control consultant has been an incredible experience – and I’m excited to see where this journey leads.

Learn. Grow. Thrive. Together. 

National Engineering Month is Ontario’s platform for celebrating the remarkable world of engineering. With a dynamic mix of insightful discussions, industry expertise, and diverse viewpoints, we’re showcasing the best of the profession. Join us in advancing engineering excellence, igniting interest in future professionals, and recognizing the vital role engineers play in society. Be a part of the #NEM2024 experience by attending an event. Explore all the exciting details at

Share This Post