January 17, 2017 Reading Time: 2 minutes

This month, in addition to our esteemed Summer Program, we are starting an AIER Winter Program. Our Winter Program encompasses the Applied Economic Research Course and the January intersession, which are both programs we have piloted in recent years.

For the Applied Economic Research course, we currently have 12 students from the University of Sioux Falls in South Dakota on AIER’s campus continuing their immersion into AIER’s practical economic research, which took place remotely over the fall semester. As I described in the blog about the Fall engagement, this innovative approach bridges the gap between undergraduate economic education and the professional world, substantiating the theoretical base students had established in prior courses.

Since students have had meaningful interactions with AIER researchers throughout the fall semester, they arrive on our campus in January prepared to jump into the workings of the office. Our researchers, too, are already familiar with the group, with their skills and knowledge level. Thus, they have a better understanding of what to assign students during their two-week stay.

The project should be related to AIER’s research agenda, and be specific enough and deep enough to be meaningful, enjoyable, and challenging for students. Also, it has to be manageable enough to be completed in the time they are here and be presented to the staff at the end of the program.

This January, three teams of Sioux Falls students are working on three projects with our research staff: “History of Money” with John Skar and Ted Cangero; “Small Businesses” with Max Gulker; and “Wages by Industry” with Patrick Coate.

For the January Intersession part of the Winter Program, we have a student from Bard College’s Levy Institute, Rhett Maiorana, working on a research project on financial innovation with Senior Research Fellow Bob Hughes.

Additionally, it gives me an opportunity to collaborate intensely with Lorri Halverson, a professor at the University of Sioux Falls who came with the students. We work together on a chapter on experiential learning for the book “Intuition, Trust, and Analytics,” which was solicited by Taylor and Francis Group publishing company to be published later this year. The basis for this chapter is AIER’s innovative experience with the Applied Economic Research course described here.

I am excited to see our educational programming grow and evolve, adding new dimensions to the Summer Fellowship Program. Applications for the summer program are due by February 15, 2017.

Picture: Winter 2017 group at AIER: University of Sioux Falls and Bard College. Front row (L to R): Lorri Halverson, Brooklyn Smith, Natalia Smirnova, Courtney Kelderman, Max Gulker; Second row (L to R): Robert Hughes, Brett Korn, Morgan Fischer, Rhett Maiorana (Bard College), Gabe Kasak, Ashlyn Wall, Lindsey Schaap; Back row (L to R): Ted Cangero, John Skar, Max Rysdon, Ben Loosbrock, Joseph Rositano, Caleb Weeldreyer, Alec Potts, Partick Coate.


Natalia Smirnova, PhD

Get notified of new articles from Natalia Smirnova, PhD and AIER.