Profile image
By Environmental and Urban Economics (Reporter)
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views

Last Hour:
Last 24 Hours:

Dinner with USC Econ Undergraduates

Tuesday, November 15, 2016 8:17
% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.

As the Director of Undergraduate Studies at USC Econ, I am trying to get to know more of our students.  Last night, I took five smart young people to dinner.  The  group consisted of three first year students, a senior and a junior transfer.  It turns out that not all Economics majors are the same.  One is actively engaged with the rock climbing club while another enjoys yoga and a third is into ping pong while a fourth plays music and debates and the fifth plays tennis.  Each of them had some advice for me concerning what USC Econ can do to offer them an even better major.  They want more internship possibilities and more career planning advice. Some want more research experience.  We did have one spirited debate last night.  One student embraced Senator Sanders’ agenda of raising the minimum wage and other well intended policies. I countered that this well intended agenda would transform our economy into a larger version of France and that it is important to “be careful what you wish for”.   It interests me that this student (who has attended 4 years of USC Econ lectures on economics), could so firmly hold this worldview.

I argued at dinner that in our Internet world that the assumptions embedded in the perfect competition model of labor markets  now hold true more than at any time in history. Workers have close to complete information about what it is like to work at different firms and in all medium to large cities they have thousands of potential employers to work for.  There is an active labor market searching for skilled and/or dedicated people.

I would hope that any graduate of USC Economics knows at least three things;  1. the power of incentives in guiding human behavior,  2. the importance of allowing the price system to allocate scarce resources,  3. the skill to use statistics and econometrics to rigorously test hypotheses.    These three pieces of knowledge are likely to be both necessary and sufficient for later life success.


We encourage you to Share our Reports, Analyses, Breaking News and Videos. Simply Click your Favorite Social Media Button and Share.

Report abuse


Your Comments
Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

Top Stories
Recent Stories



Top Global

Top Alternative



Email this story
Email this story

If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.