June 9, 2016 Reading Time: 2 minutes

AIER’s Max Gulker with Jake McLanahan from the Berkshire School at the ARISE event.

AIER’s 2015-2016 academic year internship program benefitted 13 students . Today, I would like to highlight three of them: Ehan Keator, Jay Ma, and Jake McLanahan, who were studying economics as part of the Berkshire School Advanced Science and Math Research program.

The three students presented posters during the Advanced Research and Independent Study Exhibition (ARISE) event at the Berkshire School on May 19. They were able to dig deep into their topics. Jake McLanahan studied U.S. monetary policy after the 2008 crisis; Jay Ma concentrated on the understanding of the recent Chinese stock market crash; and Ehan Keator focused on 2016 presidential candidates’ proposals on student debt. The students each wrote a paper, presented a poster, and fielded questions from an inquisitive audience at the event.

In addition to gaining an understanding of the basics of economic research, the students report that they learned a lot of skills that are different from the ones they are exposed to in school, including critical thinking and problem solving, communication and collaboration, creativity and innovation.

In terms of life skills, students reported that they learned to be confident, independent thinkers. They learned to be able to self-guide their research progress, and communicate and defend their arguments and results to the experts. They learned to be able to observe nuances of the office and understand the “rules of the game”. These reflections are awesome!

We are happy to contribute to the development of the future workforce by giving opportunities for workplace learning to students in our community.

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Natalia Smirnova, PhD

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