Episode 18: In today’s episode, host Jim Ray is joined by Associate Professor of Economics Dr. Abigail Hall Blanco and senior undergraduate student Molly Rovinski. Today we’ll discuss how Bellarmine’s Rubel School of Business is helping to prepare undergraduates for the next phase in life.
Abby initially joined us for Episode 10. She has formalized an arrangement with the Pegasus Institute, a local, public policy, think tank group. Molly is currently doing a research internship with them, thanks to Abby’s proactive approach.
Molly is originally from Elizabethtown, KY. She’s involved in student government at Bellarmine. She’s a past president of the honors program and serves on various advisory boards, as an undergraduate representative.
In addition to being one of Molly’s professors, Abby is also a reader on Molly’s honors thesis. This connection laid the groundwork for how Abby was able to become a mentor for Molly. Abby, who also graduated from Bellarmine’s Ruble School of Business, is very grateful for the mentoring she received from professors, such as Dr. Frank Raymond. This is an opportunity for Abby to pay it forward.
Abby discusses the transition period many undergrads experience during their senior years. They are caught between the college experience and stepping into the real world.
Molly began her honors thesis during her junior year. She describes how the pandemic impacted the focus of her paper. She actually changed her theme to focus more on border wall construction and public choice. The research aspect of the thesis was a terrific preparation step for her internship at Pegasus.
Abby explains what the Pegasus Institute is does. They generate public policy research relevant to Louisville and the state, at large. Some areas of focus include K-12 education, economic development and urban violence.
Molly’s discusses her internship as a research assistant. She’s written a blog post for Pegasus. Analyzed affordable housing and education issues in Kentucky. Her Bellarmine experience, with its focus on the community and service, provided a terrific foundation for her internship.
We discuss the value of how Bellarmine and the Ruble School of Business stresses critical thinking and why it’s so important in today’s society.
Going forward, Molly is planning on pursuing graduate studies in economics. She’s very interested in immigration policy.
Abby discusses her opinion of the purpose of the senior, honors thesis. It’s about the process, as well as the learning. There’s value to the planning, submissions, integrating feedback and
completing the thesis. These are terrific life skills and an opportunity to help the student to prepare for their careers in the real world.
Molly discusses her overall Bellarmine experience, for the benefit of parents who may be considering the university for their incoming students. The main point Molly makes focuses on the “family” aspect of the Bellarmine community. The professors are both approachable and sincerely interested in who you are as an individual. The academic programs are terrific, but the support team she found at Bellarmine was even more influential to her success. Abby echoes those sentiments.
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