Spotlighted Economics Student: Zuyi Wang '20
Zuyi Wang's thesis examines the relationship between culture and economic prosperity, with the broader goal of determining implications for policymaking and governance.
Economics major Zuyi Wang ’20 attended The Chapin School, a K-12 all-girls private school in Manhattan, New York where she grew up. Her college counselor highlighted Haverford College’s rigorous academics with the added opportunity of fencing on a Division III team. Zuyi visited Haverford’s campus a couple of times, went on a campus tour, sat in on an information session, and got to know the fencing team.
With a strong interest in business, taking economics at a liberal arts college was a good fit. She’s particularly interested in microeconomics, entrepreneurships, and fueling innovation. The economic foundation of the world, and its impact on daily life has blended well with her course work in Psychology. She will matriculate with a Minor in Psychology, which has enhanced her interest in behavioral economics, the study of cultures, and how people become who they are.
Being Chinese-American, Zuyi is drawn to learning how cultures affect human development, personalities, and how cultural matters carry over into economic indicators. Classes that have been particularly impactful include psychology Professor Shu-wen Wang’s Cultural Psychology, and economics visiting Professor Maria Olivero’s Junior Research Seminar on International Macroeconomics. In fact, Zuyi was pleasantly surprised to find that studying for Professor Olivero’s mid-term exam was one of the most enjoyable activities in her economics experience - it prompted her to piece together some key international forces that affect trade.
In Zuyi's words, her thesis "examines the relationship between culture and economic prosperity, with the broader goal of determining implications for policymaking and governance. With the increasing complexity of our modern world and the trend of continued globalization, governments and leaders are required to think creatively by addressing a multitude of perspectives that could contribute to subjective well-being of their people and economic growth. Culture encompasses many aspects of people’s lives, values, and beliefs. Some popular cultural variables that have been studied in economics research specifically are trust and subjective well-being." She will examine the relationship between trust, economic freedom and economic prosperity, as well as the way that trust mediates the relationship between subjective well-being, economic growth, and economic freedom for countries.
Zuyi spent the fall semester of her junior year abroad at DIS Copenhagen where she furthered her study of societies and cultures. She lived with a host family, fully immersed in life in Denmark. The classes she took at DIS gave her the opportunity to branch out from standard Haverford course work. Samples of classes she took include a Travel Writing class and an Innovation and Design Thinking class.
Summer internships have enriched Zuyi’s college experience. The summer following her freshman year she was a digital marketing/sales and customer success intern at GeenieBox, a New York City based start-up. She worked directly with the founder managing subscriptions, conducting phone surveys, and editing website content.
The next summer she lived in Sefrou, Morocco interning with a CPGC partner, Cherry Buttons Cooperative. Living and working with her host Mother, it was the ultimate cultural immersion experience. She taught English language classes in French to women and girls at a women’s empowerment center and worked as a business liaison for her host Mother’s cooperative and business partners in the United States.
Last summer she was a awarded a Whitehead Internship. She lived in New York City conducting market research for Engagious, a company that prepares marketing strategies, name branding and messaging content. Zuyi’s key roles at the firm included qualitative data analyses, survey compilations, dial-tested messaging, and focus group discussions surrounding client needs. One of the larger projects she worked on was attending a focus group on swing voters in Warren, Michigan where she helped write the final report with main takeaways about important policy and political topics such as trade, immigration, the economy, and the 2020 Presidential Race.
In addition to serving as the fencing team Captain, Zuyi has worked in the Admissions Office as a tour guide, office host, and Senior Interviewer since her Freshman year.
Post-graduation, she has accepted a position with AlphaSights, an information services company. As an associate, Zuyi will conduct research and connect her clients with global market advisors and experts. Congratulations Zuyi!