SAM AND IRENE BLACK SCHOOL OF BUSINESS
Advice for Majors in Business Economics (BECON)
To help you with your current and future scheduling, TENTATIVE ECON course offerings through the Spring of 2010 are provided below. If you have any questions, feel free to call, e-mail, or stop by my office. I will be happy to answer your questions.
NOTE: Courses marked with asterisks (**) are currently scheduled to be offered every other year. If you need one of these courses to satisfy your program requirements, make sure you take it when it is offered.
Additional Advising Notes
Non-Business Supporting Courses
The Non-Business Supporting Course requirement for the BECON major has been revised. Students are still required to take a total of 15 credits of non-business supporting courses. Although students are encouraged to concentrate their supporting coursework within one or two supporting course areas, ANY COMBINATION of courses from the departmentally approved list of non-business supporting courses may be chosen. The approved list encompasses coursework in international studies, foreign languages, education abroad, psychology, quantitative methods, and written and oral communication. See the BECON checksheet for a list of these courses.
Econ 304 (Intermediate Macroeconomics) is required for all ECNS majors. This course is only offered every other year, so you MUST be sure to schedule it when it is offered. You will probably have only one shot at it!
Dr. Kurre has a file of one-page course descriptions for upper-level ECON courses that give info on what each course is really all about, how it is graded, whether there's a paper/project, etc. Stop by his office (284 REDC) to get your copy, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org .
I recommend that you consider joining our campus Econ club: the Society of Undergrad Economists (SUE) . You can find more info about SUE at: http://www.clubs.psu.edu/bd/sue/ Meetings are usually every other Tuesday, and include free pizza. Contact Secretary Jon Curtis (email@example.com) to get on the mailing list for info about club activities. We do a spring road trip that's always educational and fun. Get on board! (Looks like it may be New York City this year.)
You should be creating a portfolio of your work that you can use in your job search. This should include copies of major papers you do in your Econ classes. If you can demonstrate that you know how to find, download, and clean up data, use Excel, do statistical analysis (e.g., correlation, regression, hypothesis testing), write clearly and correctly, and create graphs, you greatly improve your chances of getting hired. Our grads have often told us that showing a prospective employer a research paper has helped get them interviews and jobs. Make a point of doing this!
You may also want to consider doing a summer undergraduate research project and applying for a grant from the college to do it. You can find info here: http://pserie.psu.edu/research/undergradresearch.htm . ECON 485 (Econometrics) is especially good preparation for this.
So what do you do with an Econ degree after graduation?
We have nearly 200 grads from our ECNS and BECON programs over the years, and I keep in touch with many of them. If you would like to connect with some of them to find out about job or internship prospects or just to get some advice, please come see me. They live in Erie and in many other cities throughout the country, and work for a broad variety of employers in both the government and private sector.
Want to spend some time living and learning in D.C.?
We have lots of alumni working in the DC area who would be willing to talk with you and give advice. Come see me if you'd like some names.
Summer: Check out the Joint Program in Survey Methodology : http://www.jpsm.umd.edu/jpsm/index.htm One of our students did it a couple of years ago and loved it.
A semester at American University in DC: http://www.american.edu/washingtonsemester/ This is a great program that exposes you to lots of government agencies.
Here are some useful resources to check out:
-Careers in Economics:
Info about jobs for economists:
-Jobs with the Bureau of Economic Analysis: http://www.bea.gov/bea/beajobs.htm
If you have any questions regarding scheduling, feel free to e-mail Dr. Kurre at firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at (home: 725-6888 or office: 898-6266), or drop by his office in Room 284, REDC.