The Economics BA Program
The main goal of the economics program is to train students in the “economic way of thinking” and to use economics as a tool to understand, analyze, and solve problems in all walks of life. The Economics Board of Study offers both a major and a minor in economics.
The economics major at Purchase College is designed to train students in the tools and language used in economics and to give them:
- a rigorous understanding of economic theory and its historical development.
- the ability to apply economics theory to real-world problems.
- the ability to conduct interdisciplinary analysis.
- the ability to combine analytical skills, critical writing skills, and quantitative skills needed to succeed in a highly competitive economy.
The economics minor at Purchase College is designed to introduce students to:
- the economic way of thinking.
- analytical and quantitative tools.
- interdisciplinary analysis.
The economics faculty has an unusual breadth of teaching, research, and policy perspectives rarely found in liberal arts colleges. This provides students with rigorous training in neoclassical economics and an exposure to contemporary Austrian economics, cultural economics, public choice theory, law and economics, urban economics, and behavioral economics. Students have the opportunity to develop their quantitative skills. The program also exposes students to a wide range of policy issues concerning the role of government, economics and the arts, cities and culture, political economy, and international issues.
Given the specialization of the faculty at Purchase College, economics students can take courses that focus on cultural economics, quantitative economics, and political economy. These areas may be studied in regular courses and in tutorials and independent studies. Students also have the opportunity to work in depth on one area in their senior project, mentored closely by a faculty member. In every case, the faculty is dedicated to developing each student’s ability to think critically, write clearly, and conduct research.
Students majoring in economics are also encouraged to engage in related activities, such as attending economics lectures, presenting at conferences, joining reading groups in economics, and pursuing internships and study abroad programs during their four years at Purchase.
Many of our alumni pursue graduate training in economics, public policy, business or law; others want a broad-based liberal arts education in economics, but do not pursue advanced work after graduation. Alumni of the economics program have gone on to successful careers in a variety of fields, including finance, journalism, the arts, education, government, law, and entrepreneurship.