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Dr. Nicolas Williams- Department Head, Associate Professor

"One of the most satisfying parts of my job is when the light bulb goes on for a student."

Dr. Nicolas Williams is the Associate Dean for Graduate Programs and an Associate Professor at the University of Cincinnati.

Degrees Held:

  • Ph.D. in Economics – Northwestern University
  • M.A. in Economics – Northwestern University
  • B.A. in Economics – University of Michigan

Career Highlights:

  • Have represented economics and the college at universities in China, Dubai, India, and Vietnam
  • Visiting Associate Professor at Yale University and Honorary Visiting Scholar at University of Leicester
  • Research, focusing on empirically investigating the determinants of wage growth, has been published in outlets such as the Review of Economics and Statistics, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, and Labour Economics
  • Extensive research that has been more policy oriented, including investigating the employment effects of the minimum wage, seeking to explain the growth of the temporary help supply industry, and investigating the effects of simultaneous learning and earning

Which classes do you teach online?

  • ECON 7000 - Foundations in Economics
  • ECON 7020 - Managerial Economics

Why did you start teaching?

To pay the rent. Seriously. It was what I did to be able to do research. But, it quickly became more than that. Indeed, one of the most satisfying parts of my job is when the light bulb goes on for a student. In other words when I am able to help them to see how economics insights can be used to approach and ultimately solve problems.

What's the best advice that you ever received?

Do the first one not the second one. This was when I was pitching dissertation ideas to my advisor. He recognized that I had a comparative advantage in the first topic and let me know.

What is the best advice that you could give to your students?

If you have a passion for economics, follow that passion (and take more math!)

What qualities make someone particularly successful in the profession in which you teach?

Understanding that most people find economics difficult and that you as a professor probably never did. This means we need to try unceasingly to teach the material in an approachable and relevant way.

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