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Note: This page is out of date.
Please visit the current MIT GEA webpage for the latest information!


Welcome to the MIT Graduate Economics Associate website!

Here you will find information about our activities, a copy of our constitution, and links to some graduate student home pages.

The Graduate Economics Association (GEA) is the organization that advocates on behalf of and organizes activities for PhD students in the MIT Department of Economics. We have meetings at least once a semester and elections once a year, at the end of the spring semester. We also try to have a little fun now and again.

The primary officers of the GEA are two co-presidents, who are generally 3rd years, and two co-social chairs, who are generally 2nd years. Carmen Taveras and Nirupama Rao are your current presidents and your social chairs are Monica Martinez-Bravo and Cynthia Kinnan.

What We Do

The GEA's activities come in two flavors, fun and feedback. On the fun side, we sponsor a number of social activities throughout the year including

  • Orientation Activities for incoming students. Recent activities have included Duck and Trolley Tours of Boston, trips to Walden Pond, and days at the beach.
  • Friday Happy Hours are held about twice a month either in the department or a local bar. These provide a relaxed social setting for students and faculty to get to know one antoher outside of the classroom. This year, we're targeting quality over quantity so be sure to join in the fun and eat your share of good cheese.
  • Department Skit Party is an annual tradition for students, faculty, and staff. After a nice dinner and some drinks to loosen up the crowd, three student skits are performed by 1st years, 2nd years, and thesis writers, providing everyone the opportunity to poke some (generally) good-natured fun at life around here. The faculty then join in with their own skit. We also present teaching awards to recognize outstanding professors and TAs.
  • Champagne & Strawberries arrive after the completion of generals. They provide an excellent opportunity to re-meet all the second-years who go a-missing during the spring.
  • Faculty Student BBQs are a great chance to get together outside E52. This year we grad students will have another chance avenge a string of humiliating softball losses at the hands of the faculty and their children. We're thinking about adding a dodgeball event as well, because let's face it, there are some people you'd like to beam with a little red ball.
  • Intramural Athletics are an area where we might try to do a little more. In the past, the department has fielded teams in basketball, soccer, and ice hockey and some people have asked about GEA funding for equipment purchases. We'll discuss this at an upcoming meeting.

A particularly important role for the GEA is to provide feedback to the administration and the faculty about the program. To that end, we organize at least one "town hall meeting" per year, providing an open forum for students to share their thoughts with Jim Poterba (the Department Head). We also organize a small council. The council will comprise ten representatives, two from each of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and beyond classes, and will meet with Jim more regularly (perhaps three times per year) to provide feedback on issues from TA assignments, facilities, computing resources, cirriculum, and other significant issues affecting grad student life.

Perhaps most importantly, we're open to suggestions. So if you have one, drop us a line.


Carmen and Nirupama


© 2007 MIT Graduate Economics Association, Last Updated March 9, 2007