CBE Summer Experiences with Sarah Schmidt ’21

Women in Business and Economics Club Vice President, Sarah Schmidt ’21 prepared key research for the Department of Business & Economics through the URSCA program this summer, presenting her findings to the entire Allegheny College campus community. We asked Sarah…

What are your duties?

Sarah: For my summer research experience, I worked with Professor Martin and Professor Ormiston to create a plan to analyze gendered differences in student experiences in the Business and Economics Department. I started my research by completing a literature review to have the necessary background knowledge on gender in the field of economics. We utilized focus groups as a way to gather data about how students interact with the department and the fields of business and economics. One of my duties was to moderate these focus group experiences. We then used qualitative analysis to evaluate the data for common themes and gendered differences. I am continuing this work as my senior comp this fall. The next step is to complete more focus groups to gather more robust and representative data. I am also adding a quantitative section to test for gender difference in students’ attitudes towards economics.

Would you recommend summer research to another student?

Sarah: I would definitely recommend students to take summer research opportunities. Partaking in summer research is a great way to gain research experience that will be useful for future employment, graduate school, and especially senior comp projects. It is also a good way to explore areas of interest that are outside of what is covered in class. Through my work with the Women in Business and Economics Club, I have become interested in the issues faced by women in the field, which this research experience allowed me to explore. Depending on the topic and goal of the research, it is also a good way to make an impact on campus and the surrounding community.

Sarah Schmidt has a a double major in Economics and Environmental Science & Sustainability. On campus, she is involved in the Women in Business and Economics Club, where she serves as the Vice President. She is a member of the Global Citizens Scholar Program and the Economics Honor Society.