University News

Students, Public Invited to Economics Day Friday, April 15

April 12, 2011

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MACOMB, IL - - Do you have an interest in economics? Or are you curious about what the field of economics really involves?

Here's an opportunity to learn about the real-world applications of economics and related business fields from WIU faculty, alumni and invited guests.

The Western Illinois University Department of Economics and Decision Sciences, in conjunction with the newly established Center for Economic Education (CEE) at WIU and the Economics Student Association (ESA), will host"Economics Day: Educating Future Economists" on Friday, April 15 in Stipes (ST) Hall on the WIU-Macomb campus. All events are open free to students, faculty, staff and members of the Macomb community.

"This is an amazing opportunity for students both at WIU and from surrounding schools, as well as the community at large, to engage first-hand with economics and learn from industry experts," said Tom Sadler, associate professor of economics and decision sciences and director for the CEE. "We hope students from all majors and backgrounds will consider attending. Even if they can attend only part of a session, we hope they'll stop by to learn more about economics and interact with our guests."

8:30-9 a.m. - Informal breakfast mixer, ST 501
Students will have the opportunity to talk directly with faculty and department graduates about internships, jobs and professional expectations.

9 a.m. - Field presentations - Students and members of the community can further engage with departmental faculty during their brief presentations about the field, which will focus on the diverse opportunities for specialization within economics. Presentations will touch on the fields of health, public policy, labor and macroeconomic growth.

10-10:50 a.m. - Interactive learning opportunity, ST 121
The CEE will sponsor a session featuring a clip from the movie "Freakonomics."

11 a.m. - Keynote speech, Robert Guell, ST 121
Guell, a textbook author and professor at Indiana State University, will present "What Belongs in an Economic Issues Text? My Attempt to Blend Those Issues That Interest Economists with Those That Interest Students." He will highlight the "exciting and often unusual" applications of basic economic principles.

1:15-2:30 p.m. and 2:45-4 p.m. - Alumni panel discussions, ST 121
A panel focusing on the academic and professional experiences of WIU alumni: Jack Cook (CME Group), Larry DeBord (MVT Investments), Melissa Gilson (Caterpillar), Gisele Hamm (Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs), Derek Kane (GEA Farm Technologies Inc.), Tom Ransdell (Department of Labor), Matt Ryan (TradeLink Chicago), Jason Strimpel (Chase Investment Services Corp.) and Sean Weppler (Weppler & Weppler).

"The professional experiences of our alumni working in diverse fields underscores the message that economics is a truly broad discipline with countless applications and opportunities," noted Sadler.

For more information, contact Economics Student Association faculty advisers Tara Westerhold or Jessica Harriger at or (309) 298-1153.

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