Assistant professor of economics, Seaver College
Economic principles, says Eric Olson, can be applied to a much wider range of problems than just issues relating to money. They can help evaluate and even predict human behavior. "For example, there are a number of economists who have taken basic economic principles and used them to successfully predict terrorists' behavior," Olson explains. "Economics really is a way of thinking. Once one has an understanding of the basic principles, then he/she can help solve problems in a number of different fields."
Olson recently completed his Ph.D. in economics from the University of Alabama, where he also earned his master's degree in 2005 and graduated magna cum laude in 2004. In Alabama, he taught intermediate macro and microeconomics, was awarded the Beta Gamma Sigma Outstanding Ph.D. Student Award, and traveled to Edinburgh, Scotland, to present "A Comparative Study of Two Different Credit Methods" at the Credit Scoring and Credit Control conference in 2007.
He has been published in the Instructor's Manual to Accompany Applied Econometric Time-Series, with co-authored publications forthcoming in the Journal of Data Sciences and the Oxford Handbook of the Economics of Peace and Conflict.
We ask: What economical advice do you have for cash-strapped students?
Try and graduate as fast as you can, even if it means taking out student loans. In the long run, the opportunity cost of working low paying jobs in college rather than graduating early or on time is really high."