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College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Department of Economics

Current Students

MA Graduate Degree

Alumni Profiles

Brianna Connelly 

bc Year Graduated: 2013

 Thesis: The Organic Beauty Industry: A Gendered Economic  Review

 Current Employer: Manager in Data Analytics at Return Path  

 How did you become interested in studying Economics?
 Professor Mark Evers showed me that my data visualization and data-nerd hobbies were actually a super fun thing called economics! Also, the theory and topic interests  just clicked.  I enjoy math and statistics immensely, but the social aspect of economics truly makes the data and economics come to life for me.

 Why did you choose to get an MA degree at DU?
 I LOVE the Economics Dept at DU.  The professors offered a diverse breadth of focus areas, truly any interest is supported.  I also really enjoy the community within the  department - the professors and students are wonderful, funny, and smart!

What knowledge and skills that you picked up in our MA program have proven most valuable to your job?
Technical skill sets would include critical math problem solving, statistical analysis, economic modeling, impactful data visualization, and technical writing skills.  Soft skill sets would include project management, team building/participation, conceptual problem resolution process, organization, and an advanced knowledge of data sciences.

What did you enjoy most about the program at DU?
The professors.  Without the support of the Economics Department; academically, professionally, and personally I would have never discovered my capabilities as an economist.  Nor would I have ever pushed myself to the limits of my comfort zone and found another whole world beyond that.  Without the DU Economics staff, I would have never discovered my true potential in data - I can honestly say those folks inspired me and fostered my development no matter what.  

What unique aspect of our program do you most appreciate now?
That each professor has their own field of interest and actively pursues that passion regardless of tenure etc.  It was wonderful to have professors that were still students themselves in regards to their own fields of studies.  The fun, insightful, and intelligent discussions/lectures are something I truly appreciate now.

What was your favorite Class at DU? 
Environmental Economics with Dr. Piovani.  I loved the reading, the topics, the discussions, and especially the message.  I ended up writing my thesis which touched on environmental economics. It was a great class.

What advice would you give to someone considering getting an MA in Economics from DU?
Don’t get me wrong the professors are fun people, but they are damn good at their jobs.  They will stretch your mind, make you rethink fundamentals you thought were true, give you problems that take you weeks if not months to solve, and that’s just from the first BBQ Dr. Mott holds!  The classes are hard, there is no way around it, but the progress and comparative results after are what makes you a great economist.  This will require your full dedication, but it will also yield the greatest connections and rewards.  You can leave this program with your clutches on your dream job - not just an entry level position.  That’s what happened to me!  The staff and the department will exhaust all opportunities to see you succeed. Not to mention, the environment is pretty casual and everyone is very approachable.  I know the successful person I am now was molded from this MA program.  I grew so much and am able to take on whatever dream I have.  I’m a very proud DU Economics Alum.