What kinds of careers are available to economics majors?
Economics majors from the College of Wooster pursue many career paths. They apply skills learned in the classroom before they graduate through experiential learning. Our curriculum builds analytical and critical thinking skills, as well as writing and communication that are prized by employers. For this reason, graduates have a variety of paths open to them. Wooster’s Economics majors have found fulfilling careers in the public and private sectors, in entrepreneurship, research, and in organizations of every size and industry. These include the United States Federal Reserve, U.S. Department of State, Kenyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, OECD, International Monetary Fund, The World Bank, Morgan Stanley, Ernst & Young, Citigroup, Grameen Bank, CVS, Johnson & Johnson, The Gap, Boston Consulting Group, Mathematica, Bain & Company, and Dahlberg as well as research organizations like Poverty Action Lab, and International Food Policy Research Institute. Some students have also opted for highly selective service opportunities after they graduate such as Peace Corps or Teach for America. A large percentage of our graduates go on to graduate programs or have pursued professional degrees in law, business, and accounting. Wooster ranks No. 3 in the nation on the list of graduates who go on to earn Ph.Ds.
Economics at The College of Wooster
The Economics major helps students understand how humans organize to sustain life and enhance its quality, specifically how social and economic institutions are used to provision and allocate resources. Our program provides an analytically rigorous and critical understanding of markets, market failures, and non-market institutions that affect the everyday lives of individuals, families, firms, and societies. A Wooster Economics major is comfortable studying a wide variety of questions from different perspectives. Questions include: How do we individually and collectively ensure our material well-being now and into the future? How do individuals, families, communities, and institutions make behavioral and policy choices? Why is it that we have poverty, inequality, recessions, debt, unemployment, inflation? What are the roles of for-and-non-profit firms, financial institutions, governments, and central banks in an economy? The program develops an understanding of markets and its failures, behavioral choices and agency in diverse settings, alternative systems of provisioning and allocation, and the effects of institutions and policy on individuals, firms, and societies.
The core curriculum consists of five-and-one-half required courses, a scaffolded three semester mentored thesis experience, and five electives. Together these expose students to the systematic study of economic phenomena and problems using mathematical, statistical, and economic modeling tools. They include instruction and application of statistics, econometrics, optimization theory, cost/benefit analysis, price theory, and economic modeling. The electives deepen critical thinking, expose students to pluralist ideas, diverse forms of economic analysis, the philosophical origins of the discipline, and extends the quantitative and econometric training further to include novel empirical practices.
Wooster’s unique approach to mentorship is woven through economics courses. Our faculty facilitate and lead unique experiential learning opportunities for our students. For example:
Students are recruited annually into the Sophomore Research Program to work on current faculty research projects. The Economics Department has a number of endowed funds that support student-faculty research as well as attendance at Conferences and Symposia.
Every year, the College’s Social Entrepreneurship (SE) program and AMRE program consults local and international not-for-profits on social change and business problems.
With our experiential learning programs, teams of students supported by faculty advisors work with business, industry, or agency clients, or do academic research using the tools they learned in our courses.
The department’s ethos uses individual advising to create a supportive environment for our students’ intellectual interests and career goals. This ethos has supported the creation of Wooster Women and Gender Minorities in Economics (WWGME), a student run club. The department supports WWGME’s mission to elevate female, non-binary, and other gender-minority students as leaders in the field of economics.
Outside the Classroom: Applied Methods and Research Experience (AMRE)
The Applied Methods and Research Experience (AMRE) gives College of Wooster students the opportunity to apply classroom learning in the role of business and organizational consultants. For eight weeks of the summer, student teams and faculty advisors are paired with a (usually local) business, industry, or agency (client). Student participants are exposed to practical applications of their liberal arts education in a “real world” setting. This experience aids students in determining professional interests and developing professional skills. The faculty advisors have the opportunity to be involved with a very select group of students in a summer activity, while potentially contributing to research in applied fields. Clients have the opportunity to tangibly support education and, at a low cost, obtain solutions to problems that would most likely not be addressed internally. Learn more about AMRE
The economics major begins with a solid core of economic theory and quantitative methods. This preparation includes principles of economics, intermediate macroeconomic and microeconomic theory, quantitative methods and econometrics. Students then elect to take a series of topics courses such as health economics, the economics of gender, history and philosophy of economic thought, as well as environmental economics, labor economics, behavioral economics, public finance, law and economics, industrial organization, development economics, monetary economics and a yearlong series in international economics that includes trade and finance. Faculty also teach special topics inspired by their research on contemporary issues from time to time. Examples include the Global Health, Economics of Migration, Alternative Financial Institutions, Economic Topics in Environmental Justice, and Environmental Urban Economics. Visiting lectures are funded through the Wilson speaker series. Recent guests include Donald Kohn, former Vice Chair of the Federal Reserve, Peter Gruber, CEO of Mandalay Pictures, Katherine Reid, Director of the Cleveland Museum of Art, and Dr. Morton Kamien, Levy Professor of Entrepreneurship at Northwestern University.
Students who seek a STEM designation or have graduate school in mind are steered towards the department’s advanced electives in econometrics and courses in Mathematics. Students who seek to combine the career-ready quantitative training in Economics with an area of interest are encouraged to consider a program that our faculty actively contribute to. These include: Global and International Studies major with Economics as their home department, Environmental Studies, Urban Studies, Statistical & Data Sciences, as well as Women’s Gender & Sexuality Studies and Philosophy. Of course, students also have the flexibility to design their own major or double major.
The Economics minor trains students to analyze social and economic institutions used in the provisioning and allocation of resources. Our minor provides an analytically rigorous and critical understanding of markets, market failures, and non-market institutions that affect the everyday lives of individuals, families, firms. The minor consists of six courses and requires exposure to the core economic tools upto the intermediate level.
All students must successfully complete a year-long senior independent study thesis. Students work with individual professors, building a strong and cordial advising relationship that lasts a lifetime. Recent topics include a study on the efficiency of Islamic banks in Malaysia, the impact of the South Asian Preferential Trade Agreement on trade, the impact of micro-credit lending on consumption in Bangladesh, discriminatory lending policies in R907 banking, estimating the supply curve for human organs, informal labor market participation in Russia, and studying the efficient market hypothesis using neural networks.
Name: Dillon Wheeler Majors: Statistical and Data Sciences Minors: Economics Advisors: Christina Horr, Moses Luri In this study data over the course of seven […]
Wooster’s Economics majors have found fulfilling careers in the public and private sectors, in entrepreneurship, and in organizations of every size and industry. These include the United States Federal Reserve, U.S. Department of State, Kenyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs, OECD, International Monetary Fund, The World Bank, Morgan Stanley, Ernst & Young, Citigroup, Grameen Bank, CVS, Johnson & Johnson, The Gap, Boston Consulting Group, Mathematica, Bain & Company, and Dahlberg as well as research organizations like Poverty Action Lab, and International Food Policy Research Institute.
Endowed in 2001 by James R. and Linda R. Wilson, the James R. Wilson Lecture Series in Business Economics brings business and financial leaders to the Wooster campus to share their insights with students, faculty, and the broader community.
2022 – Stefan Olander, former Vice President of Global Digital Innovation of Nike
2019 – J. Clifford Hudson, Chairman and CEO of Sonic Corporation
2018 – William Espey, chief marketing officer of Chipotle Mexican Grill
2018 – Robbie Bach, former senior vice president of Microsoft
2017 – James Dicke II, Chairman and CEO of Crown Equipment Corporation.
2016 – Milton Ezrati, former senior economist and market strategist Lord Abbett Funds.
2016 – Walt W. Bettinger II, CEO at The Charles Schwab Corporation.
2015 – H.J. Markley ’72, retired executive vice president of John Deere.
2015 – Michelle Stacy, former President of Keurig, Inc.