» Samuel Harris

Research Data Analyst at CoreLogicSam Harris

Q: What were some of your favorite things to do in the OC? (i.e. restaurants, parks, day-trips, night life, etc.)

Orange County has a large amount of nature and hiking trails and many other things to do, from attending sporting events to visiting the local beaches. As a cohort we took trips to Arizona, San Diego, hiking trips to the desert and Mount Baldy, and skied at Big Bear Mountain. San Francisco, Las Vegas, Tahoe, and other destinations are also within driving distance.

Q: What was your educational/career background before you joined the program?

Before joining the Behavioral and Computational Economics program at Chapman's Economic Science Institute (or ESI) I was an undergraduate at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. At Johns Hopkins I studied Applied Mathematics and Economics. During my undergraduate program I spent several summers at ESI as a research assistant, meeting several professors and doing research in experimental economics that eventually led to a publication. After graduating from my undergraduate program I applied to Chapman's Behavioral and Computational Economics program because I thought it would be a good fit for my research interests and would prepare me well for industry or further academic work.

Q: What was your favorite aspect of the program?

The program was an outstanding two years. Our cohort had seven full time students and ESI has over a dozen faculty members which allowed for a very personalized experience and provided the freedom to work with faculty members on research topics that interested you. Additionally, our cohort was very diverse with students attending from Switzerland and Guatemala. The other students were very strong academically and the faculty was also very helpful in challenging me and working with me to develop research and analytical skills. Further, ESI held regular seminars that brought in researchers from across the globe, allowing students a chance to interact with experts in diverse fields of economics and other social sciences. It was a wonderful experience that broadened my academic and personal horizons and helped me develop a close network of friends and professional relationships that I continue to enjoy.

Q: What are you doing now and how did ESI help prepare you?

Currently I am a Data Research Analyst at CoreLogic, a real estate analytics firm based here in Orange County. I am working on a team with several other data analysts and data scientists. We are focused on utilizing 'big data' tools and new technologies such as cloud computing to help drive analytics innovation within our company.

ESI provided me a lot of valuable tools including courses on experimental design and statistics and computational economics. Through the Computational and Data Science department at Chapman we were also able to take courses in Time Series Analysis, Mathematical Modeling, and Data Mining which have proved useful as I've moved into my professional career. Chapman provided a great balance of a graduate academic experience, outstanding fellow students and faculty members, and the support needed to develop new skillsets and ideas. I also found my current position through Chapman's career center and recruitment outreach efforts.

Q: Any words of advice for future students?

Work hard, meet students from across the university, and work with the faculty to really get the most out of your experience at ESI. It was a very rewarding experience that I wouldn't hesitate to repeat.