Economics
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

What Do I Learn When I Study Economics?

When you graduate with an economics degree, you will have a good understanding of the national economy and will be able to think critically about problems in the business world. You will also have good communication skills and skills in manipulating data and using computer technology. Thus you will be prepared for many careers.

In Business

Economics majors compete very well against most business majors for jobs in the business world. Many large corporations value the broad analytical training received by economics majors. Economics majors have also generally studied demand theory and estimation, production and cost theory, analysis of market structure, antitrust policy, government regulation of business, capital budgeting, inflation theory, unemployment, the determination of interest rates, and international economics. Employers know that this knowledge will enhance their performance in managerial decision making.

Business economists are prepared to help firms understand and adapt to a changing economic environment. They often interpret and forecast the general economic climate, analyze conditions specific to their firm, and also aid the firm’s operational efficiency.

Many Mason students find private sector jobs in banking, consulting, insurance, real estate, brokerage firms, marketing, data management, budgeting, general management, sales, and in Virginia’s high-tech industries.

In Government

The range of jobs for economists in government is as broad as government itself. Government economists work for agencies in the fields of agriculture, business, finance, labor, transportation, utilities, urban economics, and international trade. Federal government employers like the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Fannie Mae, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Transportation and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation have hired Mason students as entry-level economists. Mason graduates also get government jobs at the state and local level.

In Education

Virginia requires economics education and financial literacy as party of the high-school curriculum. Students who pursue graduate-level training in economics may go on to teach at the college level.

In International Organizations, Associations, and Nonprofits

Mason students also find jobs with international lending institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, think tanks such as the American Enterprise Institute and Brookings, chambers of commerce and trade associations, labor unions, and in the nonprofit advocacy world.

What Will Your Job Title Be?

When you graduate with a bachelor’s degree in economics you may go on to get a job under a wide variety of job titles. Here are some of the job titles recent Mason graduates have:

  • Administrative Assistant
  • Analyst
  • Assistant Project Manager
  • Budget Analyst
  • Economist, Industry Analyst
  • Field Marketing Associate
  • Financial Assistant
  • Leasing Consultant
  • Loan Officer
  • Operations Research Systems Analyst
  • Project Administrator
  • Research Assistant
  • Sales Engineer
  • Sales Intern
  • State Policy Analyst
  • Statistician
  • Systems Analyst
  • Teller
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