Department of Economics
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742

Master of Science
Program in Applied Economics

Dr. John Straub, Program Director
Straub@umd.edu

College Park location
1102 Morrill Hall
Program Coordinator:
Hardeep Chowdhary
(301) 405-3557
CPmasters-econ@umd.edu

Washington, DC location
1400 16th Street, NW
Suite 140
Washington, DC 20036
Program Coordinator:
Breana Dinh
(202) 525-4308
DCmasters-econ@umd.edu

Program Highlights

Our Program Ranked #1 in the US


CBE     For the 2nd year in a row, our program has been ranked #1 in the US according to the TFE Times' 2021 ranking of Top Master of Economics Programs.  The annual ranking of economics master's degree programs is based on several factors, including graduate salaries, the undergraduate grades of students in the program, and graduate employment rates.  Our program has been ranked in their top 5 every year since 2016. 

Congratulations to our students and faculty for the well-deserved recognition.




Mode of Instruction in the Fall of 2021


     
Almost all of our program's instruction has been online since March of 2020, and will remain online through the summer of 2021.  Based on the University's Guidelines and Phased Plan for Fall 2021, we plan to resume in-person instruction in the Fall of 2021.

Some online instruction for selected courses in the Fall of 2021
     Our program is fundamentally an in-person program, and will remain so.  However, we do plan to offer some "mostly online" sections of certain core courses in the Washington, DC version of our program.
     Newly admitted students will have the option of choosing between "mostly in-person" and "mostly online" sections of the first term courses, ECON 641 (Microeconomic Analysis) and ECON 643 (Statistics). The "mostly in-person" sections will have weekly in-person class meetings, but also some online components, including weekly online discussions.  The "mostly online" sections will have in-person proctored exams in our Washington, DC suite, but all other class meetings will be online.
     Students should not assume that it will be possible to complete our whole program online.  We are fundamentally an in-person program.  All instruction in the College Park version of our program will be done in person.  But we do expect to offer some online course options for selected core courses in our program going forward.
     We will communicate with our students appropriately if it becomes necessary to adjust our plans.  Adjustments could become necessary because of student preferences, the public health situation, and/or policy decisions made by the university, and by federal, state, and local authorities.  We will continue to prioritize the health and safety of our students, instructors, and staff
.

Program Tuition frozen at 2017 level through 2020/21 Academic Year


      Our program's tuition has been $3,250 per course since 2017.  Despite approval for a tuition increase, we decided to keep tuition frozen at $3,250 per course through the 2020/21 academic year.  Our tuition will increase to $3,400 per course starting fall 2021, however, this rate remains significantly lower than the tuition charged by most comparable programs.
     As many students and their families suffer financial hardship, we are doing what we can to keep the investment in our program's training both feasible and worthwhile.


Program Transitions into STEM-designated Master of Science Program


      The Board of Regents of the University of Maryland System voted on April of 2019 to approve a proposal to convert our program into a STEM-designated Master of Science program.  The proposal was also been approved by the Maryland Higher Education Commission, and has been in effect since the fall of 2019.

     One practical implication of the STEM designation is that international graduates of our program are now eligible for a 2-year extension to the standard 1-year Optional Practical Training in the U.S.  Being eligible to stay in the US for up to 3 years after graduation makes our graduates even more attractive to potential OPT sponsors. “We have hired students from the University of Maryland’s Applied Economics master’s program since its inception. The STEM designation gives Optimal and other potential employers a viable opportunity to hire highly qualified international graduates with scarce  skill sets.”  -- Mark Turner, CEO of Optimal Solutions Group.

     “The program’s curriculum has always emphasized the quantitative econometric approach that’s now officially recognized by the STEM designation.”  -- John Shea, Associate Chair and Director of Graduate Studies in the Department of Economics.

     The program’s curriculum will continue to evolve in this direction, with new courses in development, including a course on economic applications of Python and R programming.

2018 Cohort



Our Program's Career Placement Discussed in Washington Post


UMD MS in Applied EconOur program's director, Dr. John Straub, was quoted in the Washington Post's Spring Guide to Graduate Education.  "Our STEM-designated MS program has placed hundreds of students in the DC area since 2012."

Dr. Straub was quoted in a feature about connecting students and graduates with jobs.  In addition to the career fairs that our program organizes for students and alumni, Dr. Straub also noted the valuable networking opportunities.  Many of the students and PhD instructors already work at exactly the same kinds of places that recruit our students.  These include government agencies, as well as private consulting firms, and international organizations like the World Bank and International Monetary Fund. 


Dr. Straub was also interviewed for the Post's Fall Guide to Graduate Education, with a focus on the program's transition to online instruction since March of 2020.  "All of our courses feature a combination of real time synchronous instruction, as well as some asynchronous instruction like pre-recorded videos and online discussion boards.  The students almost universally prefer a combination.  They want some live interaction with the instructor and fellow students.  But they also like the videos and other asynchronous material that they can work with on their own schedule." 


Guest Lecture from IMF Board Member


On November 21st, Dr. Liviu Voinea gave a guest lecture in our program's International Macroeconomics and Finance course (ECON 683).  Dr. Voinea is the Romanian Board Member of the IMF, and a former Deputy Governor of the Romanian National Bank.

Dr. Voinea's areas of expertise dovetail nicely with the content of ECON 683, including the global crisis and policy responses in Central and Eastern Europe; trade-offs in modern central banking (in particular financial stability vs. price stability); issues related to global financial stability; euro-area and US subdued inflation; and the weaker link between wages and inflation (post-crisis Phillips Curve).

Dr. Voinea's recently published e-book, “One Hundred Years of Honesty: Recovering the Lost Memory of the Romanian Economy” has relevance for all economies in the Euro Zone.

We look forward to many more guest lectures from the Maryland economics department faculty, and from other distinguished economists. 


Partnership with the National Association for Business Economics


CBEOur program has established a partnership with the National Association for Business Economics (NABE).

The NABE is a professional organization for people who apply economics in business settings. The NABE offers a Certified Business Economist (CBE) credential for professional economists. Economists can take CBE prep courses from the NABE to prepare for their CBE exam.  But the NABE also partners with academic programs that offer relevant curricula.

The NABE's academic partners now include our program!

Students who have completed certain courses in our program's curriculum are now able to take the NABE's CBE exam without taking NABE's own courses, and with a discounted exam fee).

"Our program has long encouraged our students to become members of the NABE and to participate in the many excellent events that they sponsor in the Washington, DC area. The networking opportunities that come with NABE membership have already been valuable to many of our students.  Now graduates who also earn the CBE certification in addition to our master's degree will have even more advantages on the job market." -- Dr. John Straub, Director of the M.S. Program in Applied Economics at the University of Maryland.



Congratulations to our Spring 2019 Graduates


2019-05-24 CommencementOur department held it's Spring 2019 Commencement Ceremony on Friday, May 24th in the Xfinity Center on our main campus in College Park.

The commencement speaker was David Schaeffer, an alumnus of our department, and the founder and CEO of Cogent Communications—one of the world’s largest internet providers.  At the heart of his remarks for our graduates: "There is nothing more rewarding than learning new things and the key to anyone’s success is continued curiosity."

There were 23 graduates in our master's program's spring 2019 graduating class.  Ten of the 23 graduates were international students from countries around the globe, including China, The Bahamas, Costa Rica, India, and Taiwan.  

Members of this spring's graduating class will be working as economic analysts in private industry as well as government agencies like the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and non-governmental organizations like the World Bank, and the American Institute for Research.



Placement Events


placementOur program has begun preparing for our next career placement event on September 29th.  Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the event will be online.   

As with previous events, we will co-host the event with our department's undergraduate program in cooperation with the University of Maryland's Career Center.   

Participating employers at previous events have included:

Bipartisan Policy Center; Econometrica, Inc.; Fannie Mae; Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation; Federal Housing Finance Agency; Federal Reserve Board of Governors;  Northwestern Mutual; Office of Inspector General, Office of Evaluation and Inspections; Optimal Solutions Group; Resolution Economics; Summit Consulting; The Urban Institute; U.S. Bureau of the Census; U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; U.S. Department of the Treasury; U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission; U.S. Department of Homeland Security/FEMA.

We usually host similar events every fall in College Park and every spring in Washington, DC.