Grace Bassekle ’24 chosen for inaugural Expanding Diversity in Economics Summer Institute

Grace Bassekle ’24 is spending part of her summer at an inaugural three-week economics immersion program.

3 August 2021 Posted In:
grace at virtual economics program

Grace Bassekle ’24 is spending part of her summer at the Economics Institute hosted by the Becker Friedman Institute for Economics at the University of Chicago. The inaugural three-week economics immersion program, was designed to identify and support talented undergraduate students from a broad range of backgrounds interested in the study of economics. 

“I love that I’m thinking like an economist 24/7,” Bassekle said. “I want to use my knowledge and critical thinking skills from an economics perspective to work on mitigating the climate crisis and solving the wealth inequality in the world and I thought this program would be a great way for me to learn more about the field and get some real experience in it.”

From a pool of more than 200 applications, 45 participants were selected from 31 institutions for the inaugural cohort, according to the Becker Friedman Institute for Economics. Bassekle heard about the opportunity from Carleton’s economics department and her Macroeconomics professor Michael Hemesath encouraged her to apply. 

“I was taking his class during the application process and he encouraged me to pursue the opportunity,” she said. “He is a notable professor, so I was pleased to have him by my side during the application process.”

The Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, native says the 11-hour, fully virtual, days are tasking, but Carleton prepared her for it. 

grace at virtual economics program

“Carleton’s fast-paced curriculum on the trimester system has allowed me to adapt to this program,” Bassekle said. “Days are long, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., filled with difficult, but intriguing topics. To prevail in a fast-paced environment for the past nine months at Carleton College has allowed me to be in shape for this economics program.”

“The best part of the program is the Lunch N’ Learn series where we hear, and have an open discussion, about research with an economist,” she continued. “I also enjoy the TA sessions. It is good to hear about the TA’s journey and their perspective on everything from graduate school and a doctorate program to classes to take in undergraduate and working right after undergraduate.”

Bassekle encourages others to apply for the program next summer. 

“I recommend my POC peers to join this program next year,” she added. “It is time that we dominate the field of economics and truly diversify it!”