Helen Collins grew up not too far from Hopkins in Silver Spring, MD. Johns Hopkins had been her dream school in high school, as many of her family members had either worked for, or studied at, Hopkins.
Helen majored in Economics and minored in Computer Science: “I chose to study Economics because of how it combines deep analytical thinking with real world problems. I thoroughly enjoyed understanding how people make decisions from an economic perspective, and studying the many variables that impact consumers, businesses and the economy as a whole. Economics just seemed the perfect fit for me.”
Helen liked the way her upper level classes built upon the principles classes to create a useful toolset. “In particular, the Economics of Poverty and Inequality and the Economics of Discrimination demonstrated how econometrics could empirically measure disparities that exist between groups of people. Those two classes were fascinating because they gave me an insight into current topics in economics beyond the level of most lawmakers and news agencies.”
Outside of class, Helen was a tutor with, and subsequently supervisor for, the Johns Hopkins Tutorial Project, an organization that serves disadvantaged Baltimore elementary school students. Helen was also a member of the JHU Choral Society, becoming president in her senior year, and was a Resident Advisor in her senior year as well. “I chose these activities because of my belief in the value of community service, and to round out my experience at Hopkins with leadership roles unrelated to my field of study.”
Helen interned at a small government contracting firm that provides both software solutions and professional services to several federal agencies, as well as at a leading blockchain technology company where she was immersed in the crypto market space during one of the most exciting summers for bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Currently, Helen is a business technology analyst at Deloitte Consulting LLP. “I chose to pursue technology consulting because I felt that I would be able to combine both my areas of study: economics and computer science. I wanted to retain a technical function in whatever position I took on, while being able to utilize my analytical and problem-solving skills in a functional manner.”
Helen, do you have any advice for potential Economics majors? “Combine your economics studies with another field that interests you. For example, by majoring in economics and minoring in computer science, believe I have a more robust insight into technology markets and technology’s disruptive influence on the economy. There are so many paths open to Economics majors!”
Well said, Helen!