Class of 2021: Salma Mohammad Ali (Dhaka, Bangladesh)
Salma Mohammad Ali, Quantitative Economics and Mathematics double major from Dhaka, Bangladesh, will be starting her Economics Ph.D. at Georgia State University, Andrew Young School of Policy Studies. Salma will be a Graduate Research Assistant and will help faculty members with their teaching and research. Salma explains, “I hope to work with professors at the Georgia Policy Labs, a network of data-centric and evidence-based labs that partner with the government and school districts to address needs of families and children.”
Salma’s primary research interests are in education and labor economics. “I hope to research factors and policies that can help individuals reach their full potential in school, college, and the labor market, for instance – policies to improve college enrollment and retention especially for low income and/or minority students.” Salma completed the senior seminar with Upton Scholar James Heckman, recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics in 2000 and leading thinker in labor economics and early childhood education.
It was just one of several transformational experiences at Beloit. Another was a research project after sophomore year with Belmark Associates, a student-run market research firm. The project, commissioned by ACTS Housing, aimed to establish baseline statistics related to demographics, homeownership, and perceptions of neighborhood in two communities in Beloit. Salma directed the project from start to finish; not only did she knock on doors, but she also coded the survey instrument, uploaded data into STATA, and presented her findings to the client.
Salma is thankful for all the support from faculty members in the Economics Department. Faculty not only took an active interest in Salma’s academic success in the classroom, but also mentored her in Belmark Associates, helped her to locate summer internships, and of course, reviewed her graduate school application materials and wrote recommendation letters. Congratulations, Salma!