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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

A running & research long weekend - Part 2

Day 2 - Presentation, run, dinner and basketball
My plenary session presentation went off without a hitch.  The Prezi was very popular.  Lots of "ooo" and "ahhhh". I again highly recommend using Prezi in your next presentation. I find that it is best to download the presentation (it goes into a pdf) onto a memory stick rather than rely on the presentation room having reliable internet.  That would be quite embarrassing if the internet was down for your presentation! The downloaded form works the same as what you developed online.  You cannot edit this version however.  Another useful item is that remotes for PowerPoint presentations will also work with Prezi, even in the pdf format. The presentation generated some great questions and was a good lead in for the following presentation by Ray Owens of the Richmond Federal Reserve Bank on the national and international economy.

Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
George Mason University
Afterwards I met up with my students (Nathan Castellano and Marko Krkeljas) and told them the plan for the rest of the day. The main item was to be at the dinner in which a great meal was to be had, followed by an interesting William A. Sandridge Lecture given by George Mason University's  Donald J. Boudreaux entitled "Economists and Imagination."

Before dinner I squeezed in my scheduled 35 minute run with strides. This is the second to last run before my marathon as I have a scheduled day off tomorrow. The weather was amazing. It is hard to believe that it is March! My legs are still feeling a bit off, so I again iced in the 50 degree ocean after my run. I did not get as many strange stares as I did last night when I soaked. I was still the only one braving the water. 

Virginia Beach
VAE host hotel
The run itself took me along the boardwalk, which was full of runners, Ocean Front Avenue, which has some beautiful homes and landscaping, and back to the boardwalk for 4 x 100m strides. Running in this setting always makes a "not-so-hot" run much better. How can one argue with ocean views and warm weather in mid-March? Also inspiring was watching the set up underway for the Yingling Shamrock Marathon to be held on Sunday. The beer tent and finish line (or should I put that in the reverse order?) were directly in front of the conference hotel (Hilton on Atlantic Avenue)

The dinner was fantastic. It is always great to get together with the VAE gang. After the lecture we went a block over to Murphy's to watch some NCAA Basketball. This is part of our annual tradition. We watched VCU pull off a win. For the first time since I have been with the VAE we got to sit outside to watch the games as the weather was unseasonably warm.

Day 3 - Elections and student presentations
Friday morning was another eventful one. The VAE business meeting started at 8:30. I was honored to be elected President of the VAE. I will serve as President-elect to Francis Bush of VMI who was handed the President's Gavel by now Past-President Elizabeth Sizemore-Perry. Very exciting stuff.

At 9:15 I chaired one of the student sessions. This happened to be the session that Nathan and Marko were presenting their papers. The three students presenting (my students and CNU's Kathryn Fitzgerald) were fantastic. Kathryn kicked the session off with her analysis "Economic Development & Gender Inequalities in Culture".  I never knew that there were indexes to measure culture and its impact on economies.  Kathryn even developed her own index and compared her results to the existing indexes. Marko followed with his paper "Determinants of Call and Put Options". Marko exhibited his passion for options and trading and the skills he acquired in his internship last summer. Nathan wrapped up the session with his study " Student Satisfaction And Perceived Support".  This study used data gathered by Dr. Julie Lyon of Roanoke College at the University of Maryland. His analysis found that having an academic advisor that encourages teaching is crucial to developing future college professors and graduate student satisfaction. All were smooth, professional and obviously knowledgeable of their topics. Kathryn is attending graduate school in economics next year. I am sure that she will excel. All students also answered questions from the audience with skill and care. I was extremely proud of them all.

Roanoke College certainly did well at the 2012 VAE Annual Meeting. Three successful presentations and an election to President! I briefly chatted with the boys, and then encouraged them to enjoy some time at the beach before the headed back to Salem.  Hopefully they do not fulfill the local prosecutors' motto: Come on vacation, leave on probation!

Now it is on to the third stage of my weekend: Wilmington and the Quintiles Marathon at Wrightsville Beach.  More to come...


fleming said...

Allie-this is really cool. I'm glad the conference went well. I wish I had been there.

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