Meet the Committee
I am Jack Hughes, and I study Politics, Philosophy and Economics. I came to Manchester wanting to advance, develop and apply my previous studies in economics. I was shocked to find that University was not the place where I could challenge what I had previously learnt and to break out of isolated applications and into real-world considerations. I felt discontent with the teaching almost immediately, and found it to be extremely narrow minded, rigid and uncritical. This experience was not reflected in how politics and philosophy were taught, and so I had to ask myself why economics should be so different. With these considerations, I felt obligated to seek out those who felt in a similar way. I am now honoured to be fighting with PCES and other groups around the world to shake-up the way economics is taught – and I hope you will join us too!
My name is James and I am currently in my second year studying Politics and International Relations. My role entails managing, editing and to a large extent writing the PCES blog, which usually involves keeping it updated with what the society is up to.
I first heard about PCES at my sixth from my economics teacher, who was very enthusiastic about our message and the previous successes of the society. And so on receiving an email invitation to apply for a committee position, I wrote my application. I’ve always been ‘down with the cause’, I suppose I first became engaged on hearing about how economics is taught and thought about: and thinking this to be wrong. It seemed patently obvious to me that it is not a subject just for dry mathematics and theories, and that it should instead be about varied and critical debate on the most just and sensible way to share the fruits of our labour. Through my role as blog editor I hope to look beyond using the blog as a kind of diary and start using it as a platform for useful information and important discussion.
My name is Cahal Moran and I’m a PhD economics student at Manchester. I’m currently in publicity for PCES, with a focus on social media. I’m in PCES because I became dissatisfied with the narrow and abstract nature of economics education during my undergraduate degree. When I found out about this society in 2013 I was excited to see that so many other students had come to similar conclusions to me. I have been in the society for several years now and think it is significant that every year, new students join up who have similar feelings to us about their degree. I’m happy to be a part of a campaign that is working hard to broaden economics education at Manchester and elsewhere.
Hi, my name is Tarek. I am a second year BA economics student on the campaigns committee. I joined PCES because it seeks to improve the economics degree programme from the perspective of the students. Whether it be campaigning to improve current modules to include new types of thinking about the same problems, or for introducing new modules that are focused on more exciting and relevant issues to our generation such as inequality. As a student myself, I felt my interests affected and what better way to represent my interests than to join PCES and campaign to try and see change. I believe economics, particularly at Manchester, and more generally at further education has a lot of potential to improve towards providing a stronger education that will leave its graduates significantly more prepared and familiar for the world after university by raising awareness about ideas and thinking we are not currently exposed to .
My name is Eva and I’m a political artist and campaigner. I’m particularly interested in the tensions between traditional pro-growth economic models and the consequences of these policies on an ecologically finite planet. I joined PCES because I see it as one of the most effective and practical ways to introduce real-world issues and broader perspectives into a critically deficient economics curricula. I see PCES as a movement which encourages students to be proactive, ask difficult questions and break free of the rigid theories which bind the economics community in isolation and ignorance. As an outreach officer it’s my aim to spread the PCES philosophy to a wider audience of similarly dissatisfied students around the world, economic justice campaigners, and the media.
Hello, my name is Mecquel and I’m a first year PPE student. I joined the PCES committee as part of the events team because I want to help host events for students at the university who on topics that aren’t necessarily covered by the syllabus. I find economics to be a fascinating subject with a vast spectrum of sub-topics and believe that we cannot fully comprehend economics without exploring its many aspects.
Hi, my name is Omar and I’m a second year BA Economics student and I’m part of the events team. My intrigue in economics stems from the fact that the theory we learn in school and university is used to explain the world around us. After being exposed to the curriculum I realized that this is not the case; my real frustration with the course comes from its lack of application to the real world, and on the rare occasion where it is applicable; the course content is too focused on the UK economy. This led me to join the PCES to help make the course more applicable to an international student body such as myself and less focused on abstract models that have little to no relevance to the real-world.
My name is Sarah and I’m a first year studying International Business, Finance & Economics. I am a secretary for PCES so my role involves communicating with members of the committee as well as attendees to our events and making sure everyone is up to date with the information they need. I also look after the society’s email account and keep in contact with our parent group Rethinking Economics and other university societies around the country.
I joined PCES because I believe passionately in the vision for change to the curriculum at Manchester. When I first studied economics, I was taught very rigid ideas about the economy and how people act within it, but questioning the models we were taught was discouraged. I think it’s important to receive an economics education which teaches a range of ideas and encourages critical thinking to evaluate them. It is for these reasons I was so excited to be a part of PCES once I began studying at Manchester.
My name is Octavian and I am a second year undergraduate student reading Economics at the University of Manchester. I joined PCES out of a concern that Economics is taught in a way in which it does not provide students with the necessary tools to properly address the economic issues we face. I was dissatisfied with the fact that Economics was almost always taught in isolation from other disciplines and that we were given virtually no chance to critically evaluate the concepts we were taught. As an events coordinator, I help the society set up and promote various events that try to make Economics more accessible to students and bring up ideas that are not usually present in Economics curricula.
My name is Mihai Codreanu, I am a BA Economics student and the only first-year member of the society. My interest in Economics came with the realisation that the High School syllabus in Romania only offers restrictive, perfect-world mathematical models instead of encouraging creative thinking and a realistic view of the world. Moving to England in search of a better, more engaging learning environment, I noticed many of the issues regarding the way Economics is taught are present here as well. By getting involved in PCES’ Campaigns Team I hope to make more people aware of the necessity of flexibility in thinking and the fact that although almost everything can be seen from a classical economic perspective, nothing should be judged just through it.