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Congratulations to the class of 2021! In this newsletter, we feature three of our graduates and Huntington 100 award inductees. We also share some recent academic updates, along with capstone presentations by Professor Madhavi Venkatesan’s Senior Seminar students and we check in with Professor Jill Dupree about her Dialogue for Civilizations in Rwanda, scheduled for the summer of 2022.

Congratulations to Sonali Howe, Bianca Palmarini, and Gisselle Rodriguez Benitez! In addition to being part of the class of 2021, they were inducted into this year’s Huntington 100 class. Meet these stellar students! 

Sonali Howe

1) What was your major?

B.S. Economics

2) What was a highlight of your experience as a student in the Economics Department?

I especially enjoyed being a TA for Professor Venkatesan’s Economics of Crime class because I got to work hands-on with students and help them to get the most out of their experience in the course.

3) What’s next for you?

I will be attending Harvard Law School in September.

Bianca Palmarini

1) What was your major?  

International Affairs and Economics  

2) What was a highlight of your experience as a student in the Economics Department?  

Taking Development Economics with Professor Silvia Prina, and Contested Economic Issues in the US Economy with Prof. Nancy Kimelman! One of my biggest regrets is not participating in the Fed challenge with Prof. Kimelman. 
3) What’s next for you? 

After graduation I will be taking some time to figure out my Graduate school plans while doing a 6-month internship in Finance and checking living in New York City off my bucket list – all while plotting for my return to east Asia!  

Gisselle Rodriguez Benitez

1) What was your major?  

Economics Major, Data Science Minor 

2) What was a highlight of your experience as a student in the Economics Department?  

Working on research and directed study with Dr. Venkatesan and Dr. Triest! Their support has been crucial to applying economics to the fields I’m interested in, namely education, sustainability, and social inequality. 

3) What’s next for you? 

I’m not exactly sure yet! But I’m planning on working for a year or two before pursuing a PhD in Social or Education Policy.  

Senior Capstone Presentations

Students enrolled in Dr. Madhavi Venkatesan’s Spring 2021 Senior Seminar course were given the opportunity to design an individual capstone research project. All projects include the application of economics but with varying approaches. The outcomes of the research projects are highlighted below. The breadth of the topics chosen showcase the ubiquitous nature of economics as well as its plurality, highlighting that economics is not limited to quantitative methods but rather is the “business of life.”

A link to each student’s video flashtalk, abstract, and bio can be accessed from the Economics Department homepage under the top line navigation tab “Research” and the link “Economics Capstone Projects.” Here is the direct link:

Academic Curriculum Highlights & Updates

Remember that undergraduates can take 5000-level Econ electives!

There are a variety of undergraduate research opportunities available through the Department, as well as the College and University. These opportunities include the PEAK program. Please do not hesitate to reach out. 

  • ECON 1711 (Economics of Sustainability) is now a permanent course.
  • There is a new online offering of ECON 2350 (Statistics). 
  • The Economics Department has new combined majors with Environmental and Sustainability Sciences, Human Services, Journalism (pending), and International Business (pending). 
  • The Minor is an option that various students can consider.  It’s not too many extra classes; please spread the word! 
  • Considering a Master’s in Economics? Learn about our PlusOne program
  • Stats (ECON 2350) and Econometrics (ECON 2560) now fulfill the Experiential Liberal Arts requirement. 
  • Calc 1 (MATH 1231) is being revamped to better meet the needs of Economics students. 
  • Women’s Labor and the Economy (ECON 3412) now fulfills the Analyzing and Using Data (AD) and Engaging Difference and Diversity (DD) NUPaths. 

Summer and Fall 2021 Electives

Summer 1   

*A complete PDF list with course descriptions is available HERE

ECON 1240 – Economics of Crime (CRN 40538) 

ECON 1260 – Contested Economic Issues (CRN 40454)  

 ECON 1711 – Economics of Sustainability (CRN 41361)  

ECON 3410 – Labor Economics (CRN 41363)  

ECON 3481 – Economics of Sports (CRN 40938) 

Summer 2 

ECON 1240 – Economics of Crime (CRN 61107) 

ECON 3442 – Money and Banking (CRN 61312) 

ECON 3520 – History of Economic Thought (CRN 61110)  

Fall 2021

*A complete PDF list with course descriptions is available HERE. 

ECON 1230 – Healthcare and Medical Econ (CRN 18716) 

ECON 1260 – Contested Economic Issues (CRN 14797)  

ECON 1281 – Economics of Creative Industries (CRN 18717)  

ECON 1291 – Development Economics (CRNs 12197 and 12422) 

ECON 1292 – Economic History of the Middle East (CRN 16104) 

ECON 1711 – Economics of Sustainability (CRN 18718) 

ECON 3404 – International Food Policy (CRN 12598 and 18719) 

ECON 3405 – A Critique of Capitalism (CRN 18720) 

ECON 3410 – Labor Economics (CRN 18721) 

ECON 3416 – Behavioral Economics (CRN 16110) 

ECON 3420 – Urban Economic Issues (CRN 18722) 

ECON 3424 – Law and Economics (CRN 18723) 

ECON 3425 – Energy Economics (CRN 14040) 

ECON 3520 – History of Economic Thought (CRN 18724)  

ECON 3711 – Economics of Race (CRN 19294) 

ECON 3916 – Intermediate Selected Topics: Micro, ST:ChangingMarketTechnology (CRN 16114) 

ECON 4635 – International Economics (CRN 18725) 

ECON 5200 – Topics in Macroeconomics (CRN 19746)

ECON 5200 – Topics in Applied Economics, CmputationlFinance/FinEcnmtrcs (CRN 18726) 

ECON 5292 – Gender & Development Economics (CRN 19296) 

Looking Ahead to Summer 2022 – Rwanda Dialogue of Civilizations
An exciting new Dialogue for Civilizations will be departing for Rwanda with Professor Jill Dupree next summer!

Dialogue of Civilizations ProgramEconomic Development in Rwanda

Coming Summer 2022 (postponed from Summer 2021)

This planned program will explore the economics of development and conflict in Rwanda. We will spend 1 week in Boston and 4 weeks living in Kigali, Rwanda, studying with students at the University of Rwanda, meeting with Government officials, International Organizations and NGO’s working to solve development problems and deal with the effects of conflict in the country and region, and meeting people around the country. Some planned events include meeting with refugees at one of the UN refugee camps near Burundi and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), visiting Kibogora Hospital near Lake Kivu and the DRC, and safari in Akagera National Park on the eastern border with Tanzania.

This program will complete two courses:

ECON 1915/3915: Special topics in macroeconomics – Economic Development in Rwanda
ECON 1916/3916: Special topics in microeconomics – Conflict Economics

It is open to anyone, at any stage in their academic career.

Get involved in our student organizations

 Students in the Economics department are part of a learning community that extends beyond the classroom. There are a number of existing student organizations to become involved in that offer an opportunity to connect with peers and mentors while exploring the field. A detailed list of organizations is available  here

Members of the graduating class are invited to continue the festivities by submitting to our virtual yearbook, highlighting our graduates and including send-offs from faculty and staff. Best of luck and well wishes!