Bringing the economic crisis home

On March 26, 2009, in News 2009, by Mark Norris

By Lauren Koenig,
March 26, 2009

Students will have a chance to hear professional analysis of the economic crisis Saturday at the Owen School of Management.

Sophomores Naveed Nanjee, Ravi Singh, and Judy Wang organized the conference on the state of the economy titled “The Crisis, My Life, Our Future.”

The event, the students said, seeks to relate the current economic situation to students by engaging panelists in debate and discussion on Saturday March 28, from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Owen Auditorium.

In addition to viewing the economic crisis in global and national frames, panels at the conference will apply these issues directly to students’ lives.

“We decided to center this conference around the economic recession because we wanted to make this international crisis applicable and understandable to all students,” said Wang, co-chair. “Everyday we hear about bank failures, government bailouts and mortgage foreclosures, but sometimes it’s hard to understand how this recession will impact our generation.”

According to the conference’s website, “partisan spin and media hyperbole” have impacted the way students view the economic situation.

“We’re the stakeholders of the economy, and we should try to understand it as much as possible,” Wang said.

Fellow co-chair Nanjee said students who are concerned about the job market, paying tuition and bills, or applying for AcFee money for a club have an interest that will be addressed at the conference.

“Students who are curious about how the economy turned down and the prospects for improvement might value the conversation,” said Associate Professor of Economics Malcolm Getz, one of the featured panelists.

Both Nanjee and Wang said that all of the panels are relevant to understanding the situation but believe that students will be particularly interested in the job market panel.

“As we transition from being students to being full time professionals, we’ll be the ones who inherent this economy. Our futures are at stake – what happens to the economy directly affects how we live our lives – what we do, where we live, and how much money we make,” said Singh. “With everything going on I don’t hear any discussion about what happens to us: What type of job market can we expect when we graduate from college?”

Nanjee believes that this panel discussion will “shed light on the long term effects of the financial crisis for young people now.”

“I think students will walk out of this conference with a better idea of what happened to the economy, what types of problems to anticipate in the coming years, and how this recession affects them on a personal level,” said Singh. “They’ll be able to know how the job market has been affected, how life at Vanderbilt might change, and most of all, what they can do about it.”

Several Vanderbilt professors and financial experts from the Nashville community will be speaking in addition to Mark Norris, Tennessee State Senate Majority Leader and Richard McCarty, Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.

The event is co-sponsored by Vanderbilt Student Government, Office of the Dean of Students, OACS, L.E.A.D., The Commons – East House, Highland Quad, AKPsi, Vanderbilt Political Review, and Amnesty International.

Due to limited seating, students must register online at in advance in order to attend.

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