What It's Like to Intern at AIER

By Micha Gartz

Callum Hudson and I, are proud to be the first Mannkal Economic Education Foundation scholars sent to the American Institute for Economic Research. We were offered the opportunity by Mannkal’s founder, Ron Manners, who had visited AIER a few months earlier. Thoroughly impressed, he had only great things to say about AIER and told me it was the place I wanted to be: I believed him.

He was right.

Enticed by Ron’s enthusiasm, and the opportunity of a lifetime, we eagerly set off from Perth, Western Australia, for our adventures in the United States. After a long flight and some time in DC we were met at Hudson Station by James Czerniawski. He was more than happy to stop to find food for the hungry students before introducing us to AIER and its staff. Their warmth was beautifully juxtaposed by the winter-wonderland outside; we found ourselves no longer missing summer at home.

AIER interns go above the standard menial tasks usually delegated to interns (although we’re not above doing them). Aside from sorting through and cataloging book donations, gathering sources to compile as educational material or summarizing research, you get to enjoy life in the picturesque New England countryside. You could be researching, drafting a report or getting an article published, before enjoying pre-dinner martinis in a Cotswold-style mansion.

But you gain real appreciate for even seemingly simple tasks when you watch as your data entry covering stock movements or tax records is expanded into projects and reports. If you are interested in data and analysis, you will probably run regressions on the regulatory landscape’s impacts on childcare availability and affordability. You might chase up a list of schools, to examine how, post-segregation, classroom diversity was popularly discouraged by naming schools after Confederate leaders.

For those more inclined to write and research, you might publish articles outlining how the government shutdown affected tariff exemptions, or questioning whether Republicans are turning against markets. Maybe you’ll analyze the Twitter trade war using WTO documents to create a comprehensive list of US and foreign retaliatory tariff actions and affected items. Perhaps you’ll hunt down quotes on what Campbell’s Soup or Harley Davidson expected from the tariffs. You might dip into the stock exchange financials to compare them with major trade announcements.

Then again, you might take a morning off to go on a scenic flight with AIER’s editorial director, Jeffrey Tucker.

The House itself is undergoing renovations and extensive redecorating, and even in this element of life interns’ input is valued. While on adventures looking for furniture in op-shops you can find an alabaster lamp, mink coat or antique clock. Perhaps you’ll be lucky and get treated to an oyster lunch in Hudson. People often say “the world is your oyster”; well, having your lunch you’ll soon realize that AIER is the pearl in the oyster.

AIER offers a unique opportunity to gain professional work experience and produce tangible outcomes in line with your strengths and interests. Furthermore, you join a community of friendly, motivated and inspiring staff, who are more than happy to take time to offer guidance and support. There are usually other interns, fellows or staff living in the Stone House: where evenings drinks are enjoyed in a room with a gold-gilt ceiling with discussion ranging from taxation to clocks that don’t watch you and the 2019 Superbowl’s beer ads.

Or perhaps President Ed Stringham will serenade staff with made-up songs on the piano.

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Micha Gartz

Micha Gartz is currently interning with AIER through the generous support of the Mannkal Economic Education Foundation.

She is completing her Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Economics and International Relations at Curtin University, where she is Secretary for the Curtin Wall Street Club. In 2018 she studied German (CEFR level B2) through the Goethe Society Perth, and attended the Asia Institute for Political Economy summer school which was hosted by the University of Hong Kong, organised by George Mason University and the Fund for American Studies.

She has previously completed an internship at the West Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, in the International Trade and Investment division.