CREC Project News and Updates

CREC Internship Profile: Mary Feser

July 25, 2018

Each year, the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC) hires a number of interns who help the organization during the busy summer period. Each is offered an opportunity to learn how the organization helps municipalities, states, and regions respond to changes in local job markets; and CREC specifically works with undergraduate and graduate students who need academic credit. Most internships attract students who major in economics, public policy / administration, urban planning, and governmental affairs. As part of a series on student learning, CREC looks back on conversations with interns who discussed their passion for helping regional competitiveness.

Intern name: Mary Feser
Program of Study: B.A. in Economics, expected May 2020
School: Wellesley College

1. What brought you to CREC?

I was interested in interning at CREC to learn how the macroeconomic concepts I am currently studying at university can be applied in a real-world setting, and to gain professional experience in an industry applicable to my major.

2. What are you currently working on?

Primarily, I’m working on reviewing and updating the COLI and Incentives databases. In addition, I’m working on small projects for the MEDC evaluation and the FDI toolkit.

3. Who are you working with?

I’m working with working with Jennie Allison, Mereb Hagos, Lee Winkler, and Lakeisha Skinner on COLI and Incentives. I’m also helping Mark Troppe with the FDI toolkit.

4. What have you learned [about your assigned projects]?

While I had previously encountered the cost-of-living tool, I now understand where the data that informs the tool comes from and the amount of time that goes into the preparation of the database. I have also learned about the role that incentives play in a business’s decision to relocate or expand their business.

5. What are you most excited about learning or working with?

I am excited to learn more about the applications of the COLI and Incentives databases and about the theory that underlies them.

6. How do you feel working in a professional setting will better prepare you for the work world?

Working in a professional setting is a relatively new experience for me, and I hope that working at CREC will help me to solidify my plans for after graduation.

About This Project

Cost of Living Index
Start Date: Jan 2000 — End Date: Ongoing

The Cost of Living Index (COLI) is the most reliable source of city-to-city comparisons of key consumer costs available since 1968. Its data is recognized by the U.S. Census Bureau, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, CNN Money, and the President’s Council of Economic Advisors. The Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) collects and compares COLI […]

About the Client

Council for Community and Economic Research

The Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) promotes excellence in community and economic research by improving data quality and availability by fostering learning about regional economic analytic methods.