Economics and Business

Why Study Economics and Business at K?

Integrating Economics and Business, theory and practice, we develop creative, broad-minded problem-solvers and leaders. 

In the business and economics department, you will learn how to apply theories to real-world problems and develop the critical thinking, quantitative analysis, and historical perspective necessary to succeed in your future career. 

Throughout your four years with the department, you will be exposed to a wide variety of ideas by taking classes focused on economic theory (Principles of Economics; Macroeconomics), quantitative tools and methods (Statistics for Business and Economics; Econometrics), fundamental business principles (Accounting; Marketing), and field-specific topics (Environmental Economics; Principles of Investments). These courses will empower you to build upon theoretical foundations to address pressing real-world problems. 

With the tangible skills and broad knowledge base you will gain as a business, economics or quantitative economics major—in addition to the experiential education and completion of your Senior Integrated Project—you will be equipped with the talents to be successful in many professional settings. Notably, our alumni have thrived in private, public, nonprofit, domestic and international business sectors. 

Choosing the Right Major

The business, economics and quantitative economics majors are three separate major programs housed within the same department. Due to the significant overlap in their programming and courses, students cannot major in multiple degree programs within the department.  

Students intending to study economics or finance at the graduate level are encouraged to major in quantitative economics, where students will be exposed to the necessary quantitative skills. Those students who are interested in law school, public policy, or really, any career path, are well served by the major in economics. Students who discover a passion for marketing, finance, accounting, or management may consider a major in business, which emphasizes analytical, problem-solving, communication, and teamwork skills.  

What can you do with a business or economics major?

Below are some of the careers, employers, and graduate schools of our business and economics alumni.


  • Financial or Investment Management
  • Entrepreneur
  • Law
  • Marketing or Sales Management
  • Public Policy


  • U.S. Department of Labor
  • Deloitte
  • Liberty Mutual
  • Fleishman Hillard
  • Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago

Graduate Schools

  • University of Texas at Austin
  • University of California Irvine
  • Michigan State University
  • Texas A&M University
  • Washington University in St. Louis

Program Spotlights

Faculty Excellence: Learn from the Experts

You will benefit from learning from our stellar faculty, who are all experts in their fields or entrepreneurs who have demonstrated success in business practices. With an array of different backgrounds and specialties, our faculty cooperate to further their respective fields, such as Professors Hultberg and Udayanganie, who collaborated to research how international economic policies can combat climate change. While our faculty take pride in their research and practices, K is a teaching-first institution, and our professors take immense joy in the close mentorship they develop with students.

Apply your Learning and Gain Experience through Internships 

As a business and economics student, many of the skills you need to be successful post-graduation are best learned through professional experiences and internships. The department and the College’s Center for Career and Professional Development will coach you through the process of landing a meaningful internship and potentially even providing funding for unpaid opportunities for high-need and first-generation students. It is through these internships that you can begin to contextualize and experience your education first-hand.

K students posing with a hirer at a career fair

Be Actively Engaged in your Learning

All your classes with the department balance theory with practice. For example, in Negotiation and Persuasion, you will learn how to influence others during crucial conversations by drawing from the latest research, use cases and exercises. Each week you will practice these skills through mock negotiations, giving you the confidence to negotiate your worth and resolve conflicts.

Your courses will also take you out of the classroom and into the world, as is the case with Principles of Marketing where you will create real-life, actionable business plans to assist local business owners in meaningful ways.

Showcase your knowledge with your Senior Integrated Project (SIP) 

For an economics or business SIP, you can choose to either design and execute a research study, expand upon your previous coursework with more in-depth analysis, or take part in an internship that relates to your studies. For example, Mihail Naskovski ’22 received funding through the Gilchrist Economics and Business SIP Research Grant to conduct his research, titled, “Econometric Analysis of the Relationship Between Domestic Economic Growth and Levels of Inflow of Remittances Among Developing Countries.”

Studnet presenting on a whiteboard

Meet the Current Departmental Student Advisors


Sydney Pickell

Sydney Pickell (She/Her)

Major: Business

Minor: Psychology

What is the best thing about being part of this department?

Being able to learn in a hands-on way from passionate and extremely knowledgeable professors.

What has been your favorite class at K? Why?

This is a hard question, as a lot of the business classes I have had here have been great, but my favorite class at K has to be Principles of Marketing with Professor MacMillan. Getting to work directly with a local business to help them reach their goals was such a great experience, and I grew a lot in terms of collaboration, public speaking, problem-solving and more. Plus, it was really fun working with our group’s business, the AACORN Community, because we got to visit the farm as a part of class!

What experiential education opportunities have you participated in?

I am the captain of the women’s golf team and a SAAC representative for my team. In addition to this, I worked in the CCPD [K’s Center for Career and Professional Development] as a Marketing Intern, acted as a facilitator for peer support groups in the Psychology department and have a social media marketing internship for the second year outside of school.

What is your Senior Integrated Project (SIP)?

I am expanding a course paper that I wrote in Industrial Organization and Public Policy about the structure of the global wine industry.

What are your career aspirations/next steps after K?

I would love to work in the marketing, advertising or consulting fields after K.


Blagoja Naskovski

Blagoja Naskovski (He/Him/His)

Major: Economics

Minor: Art History

What is the best thing about being part of this department?

The best thing about the economics department is that it consists of faculty mentors who are great academics, pedagogical mentors, resourceful instructors, and scholars who always encourage students to participate in every activity.

How have you taken advantage of the open curriculum or experienced breadth in your education?

I have always been passionate for taking many different academic courses during my educational growth here at K. The liberal arts environment has opened many opportunities to take not only economics classes but also classes in the art history, political science, theatre and French departments.

What experiential education opportunities have you participated in?

During the past two summers, I got the chance to be more engaged in the local communities here in Kalamazoo through the Community Building Internship program offered by the Center for Civic Engagement. During the summer of 2021, I was interning as a Program Development Intern at Kalamazoo Youth Development where I had the chance to lead a youth advocacy initiative. During my previous summer, I had the chance to work for the City of Kalamazoo at their Community Planning and Economic Development Department as a Housing Strategy Intern. Besides my civic engagement experience, I have been also active doing my on-campus activities. During my sophomore and junior years, I worked as a Teaching Assistant for two econ courses, Marketing Intern for the CCPD, and Reference Student Librarian.

What is your Senior Integrated Project (SIP)?

My SIP will be experiential, based on my current summer internship at Morningstar as a Product Management Intern for one of their Licensed Data products.

What are your career aspirations/next steps after K?

On the job career level, I would like to continue my professional career in the investment research industry; while in the academic aspect, I see myself as a potential candidate for a doctoral degree in Economics.

Business and Economics Department News