Career Profile – Jessica Near

​Degree: B.Math
Position: Certfied Financial Planner
Company: John Near Annuity and Insurance Ltd., Sun Life Financial

A thorough understanding of mathematics is a valuable tool in today’s business world, a fact that Jessica Near has used to her advantage in her career. Jessica is a Certified Financial Planner (CFP). She provides insurance and investment solutions for individuals and corporations.

Though most of the financial data Jessica works with is calculated by actuaries on her behalf, her math background is indispensable when it comes to analyzing the data. “I can analyze a situation and prove mathematically that one answer is more profitable or more certain than another,” says Jessica. Her knowledge of mathematics also allows Jessica to provide innovative solutions for her clients. “Financial planning requires much creativity, and knowing how things work allows a person to be more creative in the solutions they provide,” says Jessica.

Jessica is a graduate of the University of Waterloo, where she obtained a B.Math with a specialization in Business Adminstration-Systems Management Options – “a long title just to say that I studied math and business,” says Jessica. The co-op option of the program helped direct her towards a career in financial planning.

After graduation, Jessica began her career as a self-employed Financial Advisor. She is now a partner in her father’s business, John Near Annuity and Insurance Agency Ltd. She is currently a 30% owner of the corporation, and will own 50% by 2013.

Financial planners often have a background in accounting or economics, but Jessica feels that a degree in mathematics has given her a competitive advantage in the field. “B.Math is a degree that demands respect in most people’s eyes,” says Jessica. “Many of my clients comment on how they feel more confident in me, knowing that I have this education.”