Joshua won first place for his paper titled “Speculation and Wheat” at the Academy of Economics and Finance Conference Undergraduate Research Competition held in Tampa, FL, Feb 6-8, 2019.

Joshua’s Research Journey

I became interested in Econometrics last summer after beginning my search for graduate programs. During my search, I noticed that nearly every school recommended or required exposure to econometrics at the undergraduate level. I then enrolled in Dr Alam’s Intro to Econometrics for the Fall 18 semester. Early in the semester I communicated to Dr. Alam that I was serious about the course and wanted to learn the most I could, and he gave me additional textbooks and publications to read outside of class (these would then become the basis for my research). One of the course requirements was to research and present a topic at the end of the semester, which is where I initially presented my paper. Afterwards, he told me about the AEF Conference and asked if I would be interested in attending and submitting my paper. I did and won first place!

In sum, this was the most challenging (and one of the most rewarding) experience I have had. I came away from this with a whole new level of respect for anyone who has completed or even attempted a PhD. At the conference I got to meet and talk with so many extremely intelligent and friendly people, which filled me with optimism and humility. I cannot thank Dr. Alam enough for all his help/support. Like many students, I have always wanted to participate in research, but never really knew how to have the conversation. He completely took me under his wing and was both a terrific teacher and mentor.

I have been accepted and intend to enroll in SUNY Buffalo’s MSc in Financial Risk Management program, specifically their quantitative finance track.  I believe their program will best allow me to improve my research and quantitative skills, thereby improving my PhD application. Long-term, I hope to complete a PhD that allows me to specialize in Finance. Afterwards, I hope to continue to work in research in either the public or private sector. As I am only just beginning my post-secondary education, my research interests are especially broad, but I would prefer to research topics that have some sort of public policy implication. I am currently working on a research paper alongside Dr. Alam that builds off my initial “Speculation and Wheat” paper.

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