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Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
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Nicole Trachman

Liberal Arts Major(s): Economics
Minor: Information Sciences and Technology, Security and Risk Analysis
Hometown: Toms River, New Jersey

What was the best part of your experience?

The best part of my experience this summer was gaining such vast exposure to the many opportunities open to me upon graduation. Although I was working specifically within the research department, I was able to attend meetings with managers and executives from many other departments (supervision and regulation, community development, IT, etc.) which was a really unique way for me to see the many directions an economics degree can take me. Being surrounded by so much support from the employees at the Bank allowed me to pursue my specific interests and gain influential mentors throughout the process of choosing my next steps.

In my economics courses at Penn State I have learned many economic models and gained strong understanding of economic theory, but it was not until my internship that I was able to truly test my knowledge in an applied setting.

How did this experience impact you academically?

This experience allowed me to further what I have learned in class and apply it in a more practical research setting. In my economics courses at Penn State I have learned many economic models and gained strong understanding of economic theory, but it was not until my internship that I was able to truly test my knowledge in an applied setting. The projects that I worked on required me to apply what I had learned and create new solutions to existing issues in the research processes. These challenges were an exciting new layer to my education and one that I have been lucky enough to continue in my own work through my senior thesis.

How will this experience impact your career goals?

I have often considered pursuing a PhD in economics, so working with influential economists that do both research and policy work was the perfect way to understand what that route would look like. After seeing a more up-close view of the research process, I am further convinced that continuing in this field is the right choice for me. I am extremely grateful to have had the experience to interact with economists whose work I have learned about in my classes and ask them in person about any questions I had pertaining to their work. I am even more lucky to have had them to answer questions about the PhD process and reiterate to me that it is not only a good choice but also one that is attainable for me.

For more information on internships for Liberal Arts students, visit our website.
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