Evan Soltas
Feb 12, 2012

Exeter Wins YUEA Competition

"Nerdy" and "academic" Exeter defeats "polished" and "investment-banker-ish" Choate

I have good news to share: I, along with three other Exonians, won the Yale Undergraduate Economics Association's competition, which effectively replaced the high school Fed Challenge in the Boston FRB district. Our faculty advisor was Giorgio Secondi, Exeter's economics instructor, who is one of my heroes. We beat seven teams, including two from Choate Rosemary Hall, which had won in Boston for over a decade and once at nationals in 2009, and one from Severn School in Maryland, which has won nationals twice (in 2006 and 2003).

The competition goes like this: each team makes a 20-minute presentation to a panel of judges on the state of the economy, the economic outlook, and policy recommendations for the Federal Open Market Committee, which directs the monetary policy of the nation's central bank, the Federal Reserve. Then the judges hit you with 10-minutes of questions on your presentation and whatever else.

In the final round, in which we faced the second Choate squad, our judges were three members of the Yale economics faculty: Roger Ibbotson, Larry Samuelson, and Katerina Simons. In the first round, we were questioned and judged by a team of graduate students.

By the way, the quoted descriptors in the subhead come from Samuelson and Simons. They meant it as a compliment to us, and it is well-taken. This victory, for me, was five years in the making--and it's one of the accomplishments in my life I feel most proud of.

Update (3/8/12): We were covered by the Exeter website here and by The Exonian here.