Can a Summer Make a Difference? The Impact of the American Economic Association Summer Program on Minority Student Outcomes

48 Pages Posted: 25 Aug 2014

See all articles by Charles Becker

Charles Becker

Duke University - Department of Economics

Cecilia E. Rouse

Princeton University - Industrial Relations Section; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Mingyu Chen

Princeton University

Date Written: August 2014

Abstract

In the 1970s, the American Economic Association (AEA) was one of several professional associations to launch a summer program with the goal of increasing racial and ethnic diversity in its profession. In this paper we estimate the effectiveness of the AEA's program which, to the best of our knowledge, is the first to rigorously study such a summer program. Using a comparison group consisting of those who applied to, but did not attend, the program and controlling for an array of background characteristics, we find that program participants were over 40 percentage points more likely to apply to and attend a PhD program in economics, 26 percentage points more likely to complete a PhD, and about 15 percentage points more likely to ever work in an economics-related academic job. Using our estimates, we calculate that the program may directly account for 17-21 percent of the PhDs awarded to minorities in economics over the past 20 years.

Suggested Citation

Becker, Charles Maxwell and Rouse, Cecilia E. and Chen, Mingyu, Can a Summer Make a Difference? The Impact of the American Economic Association Summer Program on Minority Student Outcomes (August 2014). NBER Working Paper No. w20407. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2486397

Charles Maxwell Becker (Contact Author)

Duke University - Department of Economics ( email )

213 Social Sciences Building
Box 90097
Durham, NC 27708-0204
United States

Cecilia E. Rouse

Princeton University - Industrial Relations Section ( email )

Princeton, NJ 08544-2098
United States
609-258-4042 (Phone)
609-258-2907 (Fax)

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Mingyu Chen

Princeton University

22 Chambers Street
Princeton, NJ 08544-0708
United States

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