Meet the 2022-23 NABE Scholars


The NABE Scholars Program is a key initiative of The NABE Foundation first offered in 2020 to expand opportunities in the profession for economics students and early-career economists from diverse backgrounds. Each year, 20 early-career economists and economics students from groups underrepresented in the profession are named as NABE Scholars and awarded complimentary registration to four NABE Conferences and one CBE continuing education course. Scholars also receive a complimentary NABE membership and a stipend to help offset travel costs to attend events. Interested in supporting the NABE Scholars Program? Please consider a donation to The NABE Foundation.  The application process for the 2023-24 Class of NABE Scholars will commence in April 2023.

Meet the 2022-23 Class of NABE Scholars below! 

Alejandra Merari Garcia Acevedo, Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT)
I graduated from ITAM (Mexico Autonomous Institute of Technology), and I am CDOT’s economist. Prior to joining CDOT, I worked as a Business Researcher and Market Consultant where my main functions were to collect and analyze market data to generate business insights for the decision makers. I have been a consultant for the antitrust field using Industrial Organization theory and econometric models to support the defense arguments for my clients and to prove market damage. As a consultant for government agencies, I have experience in the assessment of Mexican government budgets.

Narmine Ben Aissa, Asurion
Narmine is an Economic Analyst with a background in Computer Science and interest in blockchain technology, entrepreneurship, and public policy. She was a Thomas Jefferson Department of State program scholar. Narmine is originally from Tunisia and pursued her education at the University of Arkansas, both her undergraduate in Computer Science and her Masters in Economic Analytics. She has an interest and experience in researching Central Bank Digital Currency in Africa and the Venture Capital landscape in Africa. Narmine is a part of the Network 20/20 Entrepreneurship diplomacy program doing qualitative research on the public policy, political, and public sector fields in Tunisia. Narmine is also a blockchain and Central Bank Digital Currency enthusiast and a Frankfurt School Blockchain DLT Talent. Narmine has been a NABE member for a year now. As a young graduate, she wants to acquire experience in development economics, research, and analytics to pursue her goal to work for the World Bank. She is currently working as a Quantitative Analyst at Asurion.

Stephen Rexford Acquah, University of Connecticut
Stephen is a highly enthusiastic, imaginative, and detail-oriented graduate student in Quantitative Economics at the University of Connecticut aspiring to become a future Tech-economics expert and Certified Business Economist. Currently, he holds a Master of Science in Economics from the University of Verona, Italy, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Mathematics from the University of Cape Coast, Ghana. He has acquired diverse professional skills and outstanding experience through studying, researching, and working in academic and corporate environments and is extremely competent when it comes to liaising with students and  colleagues at all levels. He is committed to continuous learning, research, and professional development, with a genuine interest in advanced economic research.

Luis Baires, Frost Investment Services
I started my career with Frost Bank in the call center while I completed my undergraduate studies. By delivering exceptional work, an opportunity opened to join Frost Investment Services, where I assist with the handling of discretionary accounts. During my time with Frost Investment Services, I completed my undergraduate studies in finance from the University of Houston – Downtown, where I learned macroeconomics is a determinant in the investment industry. My career goal for the next five years is to complete a master’s of science in finance program in hopes of an opportunity to become an analyst in the economic or investment industry. Attending NABE conferences will provide a platform for continuing education and building relationships with NABE members.

Shannan Burton, AEASP Scholar at Howard University / NABE Scholar
Shannan Burton graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park, with a bachelor's degree in Economics and a minor in Global Poverty. After graduating from Maryland, she went on to earn a master's degree in Financial Economics from Youngstown State University. This past summer, Shannan was a scholar in the AEA Summer Program (AEASP) at Howard University. Upon completion of the summer program, she plans to enter the economics profession and sit for the Certified Business Economist exam.

Evelyn Gineth Campo Arias, The George Washington University
I have a bachelor’s degree in Political Science with an option in Economics from Colombia, my home country. Currently, I am pursuing my master’s degree in Applied Economics and a Certificate in Data Science. At the same time, I intern at the Inter-American Development Bank doing data analysis, economic research, and structuring metadata handbooks for the Energy Division. Attending NABE conferences will further my knowledge in my areas of interest as an Economist and be an excellent source of new perspectives and ideas to help me in my role and path. This is a delightful experience to connect with fellow economists and learn about how they have advanced in their fields. 

Jacob Dennis, Hunter College / African School of Economics
While I originally wanted to become a lawyer, my first political economy course in my undergraduate career immediately drew me to economics and its methodology. After finishing my bachelor’s degree, I began a fellowship at NYU Stern’s economics department as a pre-doctoral student while taking classes and conducting original research. I am currently pursuing a double master’s degree in economics in a joint program between Hunter College and the African School of Economics. After finishing, I plan to pursue a PhD in Economics with an emphasis in applied micro. Prior to finishing the PhD, I also plan on starting a private research firm to leverage my skills. NABE is a crucial step in bridging my interests in research and academia. With its resources, network, and conferences, I can build upon my academic skillset with the industry toolkit of business economists. 

Austin Glass, Global Economics Group
I am honored to have been selected as a 2022 NABE Scholar. I graduated from Villanova University in May 2022 with my degree in economics, and an honors concentration in politics, philosophy, and economics (PPE). However, I began my undergraduate career unsure of what exactly I wanted to do. Over my time at Villanova, I credit stellar faculty and the liberal arts emphasis for fostering my love for economics. As a discipline, I see economics as an integral part of understanding the way that the world works, beyond just dollars and cents. Studying economics encourages me to think about causes, questions, and potential theories for why things happen the way that they do. After graduating from Villanova University, I began working as a Research Analyst at Global Economics Group where I continue to work with economic theory and application at the intersection of law and business. I am passionate about growing in my career as an economist, and I know that my affiliation with NABE will help me develop my network of mentors, peers, and friends with whom I can foster deeper and more nuanced understandings of the world. Particularly in 2022, where economic concepts find themselves in news broadcasts on a daily basis, my NABE membership gives me a place where I can make sense of things, share my own perspective, and learn alongside other professionals committed to this same goal.

Junie Joseph, U.S. International Trade Commission 

Trained as a mathematician and an economist at the University of Florida and Cornell University, respectively, Junie Joseph is an international trade analyst at the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) and an International Career Advancement Program Fellow. At the USITC, she researches financial services, distributional effects of trade and trade policy, and the intersection of macroeconomics and international trade while also leading studies on a variety of trade topics. Prior to joining the USITC, Junie researched the trends and implications of trade remedies on economies and labor markets at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, working closely with Chad P. Bown. When not researching, Junie enjoys leading community service projects, mentoring, enjoying the outdoors, and baking.

Ruby Martinez-Berrier, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Ruby is an Outreach Analyst at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Previously, she was a Research Analyst at greater: SATX, a private-public nonprofit dedicated to growing quality jobs in the San Antonio, TX region. She is also an Economics Professor. She received her BA in Economics from the University of Texas at Austin and her Master’s in Local Economic Development from the London School of Economics and Political Science in London, England.

Angelica Martini, CHEP, a Brambles Company
Angelica Martini graduated summa cum laude from Agnes Scott College with a B.A. in Economics and International Relations. Currently, she is a Customer & Market Insights Manager at CHEP, a Brambles company. Angelica aspires to earn a Ph.D. in Economics and intends to use her research to inform public policy decision making.

Rafia Tanou Mijiyawa, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
I am an economist with the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) since June 2020. My work includes, but is not limited to, applying economic and statistical reasoning to analyze employment data for best estimated adjustments for states. I produce on a monthly basis the Current Employment Statistics-State and Area (CES-SAE) employment data tables and the CES-SAE employment news releases that are published on the BLS SAE website. Prior to joining the BLS, I was a bank teller with Bank of America, where I helped clients with their financial goals. I received my bachelor’s degree from Togo and my master’s degree from Rutgers University, New Jersey; both degrees in economics. I am interested in policy issues, notably those related to the labor market and attending the NABE conferences will add value to my knowledge of economic statistics and analytical and policy techniques. The conferences will also expand my network with the nation’s economists, leaders, and policymakers, which will strengthen my future career. 

Daniela Muhaj, Amazon Web Services (AWS)
Daniela is currently an Economic Research Lead for Amazon Web Services (AWS). She is responsible for generating original research on the impact of cloud computing services and infrastructure on the environment, social progress, and economic growth. She joined AWS from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where she was a Policy and Research Manager at the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL). Daniela has a decade of experience working in applied economic research, impact evaluations, and development policy across institutions, geographies, and stakeholders. More specifically, she has worked in institutions like the Central Bank of Slovenia, International Monetary Fund, and Harvard University’s Center for International Development. In 2019, she was selected as a G20 Young Global Changer and participated in the Berlin Global Solutions Summit. She  presented research on the drivers and policy responses to economic inequality at a G20 Tokyo event. Daniela received her Master in International Economics and Relations from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). She also holds a dual Bachelor of Science in Mathematical Economics and Bachelor of Arts in International Studies from Baldwin Wallace University, where she graduated summa cum laude. 

Anjali Nair, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
My curiosity and experience intersect in figuring out how to apply economics and data-driven solutions to complex real-world problems. While pursuing my undergraduate Math/Economics degree at Northeastern University, I had the opportunity to work at J-PAL as a Policy and Research Intern where I first learned how rigorous economics research could be used to evaluate the impact of social programs, thereby allowing leaders to make better informed decisions for their communities. Since graduating, I have continued to work in the data-driven policymaking space at the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas as an Outreach Analyst, where I gather and analyze real-time anecdotal evidence to map current economic trends in the western Texas and southern New Mexico region. I am excited for this opportunity to continue to grow with NABE, by connecting with and learning from data-driven leaders across the field, while also developing my analytical skills through the various training opportunities and conferences in the upcoming year. 

Chinyelu Obioha, Wells Fargo
Mrs. Chinyelu Obioha hold an MSc in Finance and MSc in Economics from two world-class Universities with vast working experience in numerous roles such as, financial analysis, finance researching, assistant economist, and operating in a multinational environment, with a wealth of experience in economics with unbeatable conceptual and analytical skills. In November 2021, she started out her career at Wells Fargo as a senior financial analyst. Chinyelu has expertise in many areas of analysis and research with proven track records. Furthermore, it was during her NYSC Program at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), where Chinyelu worked in the modelling and forecasting office, that she began to appreciate the relevance of econometrics and economic theory in the efficient and effective implementation of economic and environmental policies as well as eradication of poverty. In 2015, Chinyelu earned a master’s degree in Economics from the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom, which equipped her with the qualitative, quantitative, theoretical, and analytical tools to further her professional career. In March 2020, Chinyelu graduated with an MSc degree in Finance from Walsh College in Troy, Michigan. As a student at Walsh, Chinyelu was a member of the Walsh College Investment Club and the International Student Association where she got to network and collaborate with other students. Her journey did not end there, and her quest to become a renowned financial economist and receive a doctoral degree in economics with a specialization in finance is still on course.

Arsene Oka, Howard University
Arsene is currently a PhD student in economics at Howard University. He received a Master of Science degree in Finance and Economics from West Texas A&M University in 2020. Prior to that, he graduated from Columbia University in The City of New York with a Bachelor of Arts in Financial Economics in 2018. In 2013, he completed an Associate of Arts degree in Business Administration from Bristol Community College in Massachusetts. This year, Arsene has been inducted into the Omicron Delta Epsilon International Economic Honors Society. Currently, he is a NABE Scholar and an intern at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors this summer as a Graduate Economic research intern in the International Finance Division.

Oscar Parra, Jr., Boston College
There has been nothing as uncertain as these past two years of my life due to the Covid pandemic. As another year meets half way, I still have to face more uncertainty with the impeding economic frustration/uncertainty. I’m currently pursuing a Masters of Science in Applied Economics at Boston College where I plan to expand my ability to succeed in the field of Economics. One reason that I continue to pursue a career in this field is because of the lack of representation of minority groups. With very few Hispanic/Latino economists, I plan to advocate for those that are underrepresented. Having this opportunity to connect with others with diverse backgrounds will, without a doubt, expand my ideas. NABE will make that possible since I will be able to attend conferences as part of this scholarship.

Valentina Solci, London School of Economics and University of Southern California
My journey in economics began during my senior year of high school where I took an Advanced Placement (AP) Economics course. I fell in love with the field and decided to pursue it as my major for undergraduate school. Now that I have graduated from The New School with a B.A. in Economics, I have been involved in the field for a total of five years. Economics has broadened my perspective and assisted me in preparing for my long-term career path. I began working part-time when I was 16 years old. From the age of 16 up to now (21 years old), I have gained experience in business, luxury fashion, New York City real estate, and journalism/writing. From an academic perspective, I participated in a variety of programs, such as: New York University's pre-college program, Bocconi University (semester abroad), United Nations Summer Study, University of California Los Angeles economics summer course, Charter Communications' Scholarship and Internship program, and Parsons Paris (semester abroad). I have earned various awards and scholarships over the years, such as, New York University's Darlene Forest award, The New School's Dean's List (four consecutive years), Charter Communications: Spectrum Scholars, Mejuri Empowerment Fund, and the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship. In the long term, I will utilize my education and experience to launch my own business. Thus, whilst I plan on learning and growing as a young professional during these next few years (in the fields of business and real estate primarily), in the long term I aspire to be a successful entrepreneur. In addition to this, I hope to positively contribute to important causes and be active in the nonprofit community.

Anaya Truss-Williams, University of Maryland, College Park
Anaya Truss-Williams is a rising senior at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she is pursuing a dual degree in Economics and Economic Geography with a minor in Global Poverty. Anaya has a passion for topics at the intersection of economics and geography and is currently researching the impact of state-run liquor store openings on housing costs in Pennsylvania. She has previously interned at the San Francisco Fed’s Cash Product Office and is currently the regional and community analysis intern at the Richmond Fed. Her plans for her final year as an undergraduate include doing her capstone on seafood economies and trade and investigating the business environment in her college town for a project on the small businesses lost over the years as the special projects' editor of the independent, student-run newspaper at UMD. After her recent return from studying abroad in the UK, she looks forward to networking on this side of the pond and attending in-person conferences for the first time.

Hanqing Ye, International Monetary Fund (IMF)
Hanqing Ye is a research assistant in the Monetary and Capital Markets department of the IMF. Her research interests include international finance, monetary economics, competition, and inequality issues. She holds an MA in international economics from American University.