Alumni Spotlights

The following profiles highlight a few of the numerous students we've had in our Master's Programs.

If you are a graduate of our program, and would like to be spotlighted, please contact Elizabeth Richardson at

Patrick Crotty MAPE ’21, International Economist at the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) 
Patrick Crotty

“My master's degree taught me the skills I need to be successful in my current position and has sharpened my analytical skills.  Learning research methods has made me very good at breaking down problems and processes to understand causes, effects, and confounding factors. Lastly-- and most importantly-- I learned how to juggle multiple deadlines and projects without getting overwhelmed.

"I recommend taking advantage of Duke Econ's flexible course requirements and choose courses that let you explore your academic interests. Duke Econ does an excellent job preparing students to be a quantitative researcher. This program is right for you if you want a challenging program with a focus on academic research and statistical methods.”

Ming-yen Ho, MAPE ’21, Ph.D. student, University of California, Berkeley
Ming Yen Ho

“I’m currently a Ph.D. student at Berkeley Haas studying political economy, industrial organization, and game theory. At Duke Econ, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to work with professors that helped me to develop my research interests and practical skills. Their generous recommendations were a crucial factor for my success getting offers from my dream PhD programs.

"If you’re interested in a master’s degree at Duke Econ, carefully consider your goals and how your options could help you to achieve these goals. For someone interested in pursuing a PhD, Duke's flexible 2-year program provides an advantage. There is a culture that encourages professors to work with master’s students. Duke's flexible curriculum allows students to tailor their classes to their needs.“

Emma Zang, MA '17, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Yale University
Emma Zang

“Duke Economics faculty members are deeply committed to policy-driven research and are open-minded about research in other disciplines. The courses offered in the Economics department were among the best ones I took at Duke. Through these courses, I received rigorous econometrics training and learned how economists discuss demography, family, and health.

"I'm a demographer studying family dynamics and population health. My research is highly interdisciplinary and policy-driven. My adviser  taught me how to think big and how to integrate strengths of both sociology and economics to better understand demography.”

Norma Padron MA '08 Founder & CEO, EmpiricaLab

"Training in economics provides a great framework that can help you ask questions about individual or organizational behaviors. I was drawn to applied microeconomics and within that, specifically to topics of labor economics and healthcare. My training in economics at Duke certainly shaped my interest in healthcare and moreover, the community of friends and mentors from Duke has championed me and my professional and academic journey over now 15 years!"

Edwin Cooper MA '05, Vice President of Finance & Business Unit CFO, Change Healthcare
Edwin Cooper

"My degree taught me how to think critically, evaluate and understand complex business circumstances and even technicalities that I may not have been an expert in said field. I work in Healthcare technology and pharma where critical analytics is a key requirement of Senior Leadership."

Cameron Eagles, MA '18, Special Projects Manager, Self-Help Credit Union
Cameron Eagles

“I currently work in downtown Durham at Self-Help Credit Union, as the Special Projects Manager for their Commercial Lending team. Our team works to finance both small- and large-scale real estate projects focused on community development in sectors like affordable housing, healthy food systems, education, and childcare. The economics program at Duke gave me advanced training in mathematics and modeling that prepared me both for real estate finance and for building models and visualizations to think about our own organizational growth. Courses like Urban Economics also helped me think about the history and context for organizations like mine.”

Christopher Gonzalez MA '14, Senior Data Scientist, Built In

"The best parts of being a Duke Economics Grad in the Masters program is being surrounded by extremely intelligent, motivated, and awesome people. I found myself not only learning how to frame problems using the tools of economics from the great staff but also learning from my peers. Many of the Duke Economics staff and my classmates at the time are now doing grand things so it's great t have made those connections and learned so much from them."