Lecturer in Economics, Emanuel Oliveira, is leading four teams of students in this year’s iOMe Challenge. Students formed their own teams and were encouraged to include individuals from a broad skill set to include members who have policy expertise and also other with video production skills. The students are competing for the top prize of $10,000 by completing the contest’s two components of an essay and a video that illustrates the key elements of the essay. The 2011 challenge question is: Why do people today feel it is much harder to engage in financial saving than earlier generations when, on average, the earlier generations were much poorer than today? What would you propose as a solution to change and increase saving rates?
After hearing about the challenge in Oliveria’s class last year, junior Eli Karttunen differed the opportunity one year and upon hearing the announcement for the challenge in class this year Karttunen couldn’t resist getting involved. He chose to compete this year because he saw the challenge as an opportunity to learn more about policy making and offer solutions. Karttunen noted, “To see other students taking on significant real world problems that will face our generation and coming up with real solutions is inspiring that one day the issues we face today will be corrected through innovative thinking and proactive policy formation.”
Oliveira knows the significance of this project will be beneficial to the students who participate by exposing them to the policy making process. Oliveira notes, “Fixing the savings rate crisis in America will take a highly concerted effort and will likely require people to make behavioral adjustments that may cause minor discomfort in order to promote a long run sustainable savings scheme.” This challenge is important and necessary because the more people know about a problem, the more likely it is to get corrected.
Here the videos that have been submitted by Michigan Tech students and the names of the names of the participating students:
Team 1: Cole Nichols, Eli Karttunen, Bryan Endres, Adam Zwiscza
Team 2: Rachel Ristau, Jesse Patrick, Thomas Harri, Josh Floyd
Team 3: Teddy Broe, Katie O’Connel, Walker Dery, Adam Stigers, Tianlu Shen
Team 4: Coleman Segal, Genny Gierke