Professor Helland received his B.A. from the University of Missouri-Columbia and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Washington University. He specializes in microeconomics and the relationship between law and economics. In addition, Helland worked with the Rand Corporation, and currently is the Editor of the International Review of Law and Economics as well as the Co-Director of the newly established Dreier Roundtable along with Professor Ken Miller. Helland was also the recipient of the G. David Huntoon Senior Teaching Award in 2010 and 2014.
“Economics is really about how to get the most out of life,” Helland explained, “from the first day of Econ 50 when we talk about opportunity cost that’s what we’re talking about. In any area of life thinking about the economic approach to the problem provides an insight. I’ve always felt my job was to get people to think about problems using economic tools.”
In the new track, an additional 14 students will be admitted. These students will take classes together in their own separate track, essentially doubling the capacity of the PPE program without compromising the intimate nature of the major.
Helland explains that perhaps the biggest difference between PPE and other Econ classes is, “the amount of writing I can have students do. It’s actually similar to what I’ve been doing in Law and Economics for a number of years: lots of writing assignments and out of class meetings.”
The existing PPE track currently employs Paul Hurley to teach the Philosophy section, Brock Blomberg for Economics, and George Thomas for Government, who replaced Ward Elliott after his retirement this past spring.
Once the second PPE track was established, the school began the hunt for three qualified professors to fill out the ranks. The first hire was Adrienne Martin, who is coming to CMC from the University of Pennsylvania and will begin her tenure at CMC teaching Philosophy this fall. Martin will pilot the first ever PPE class in the new track when she teaches the added Philosophy section in Spring 2015.
With two-thirds of the new track accounted for, the Government section is the only section that remains vacant.