Economics Hidden

Section 1

Economics Undergraduate Staff

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The staff in the Undergraduate Studies Office is happy to assist you!

Undergraduate Studies Office Information:
214 David Kinley Hall (DKH) | | 217.333.2682
Advising Appointments & Express Advising:

Melissa NewellMelissa Newell Associate Director of Undergraduate Studies
Advising Philosophy

Melissa oversees all of the undergraduate office functions, including academic advising and programming. She advises students on academic, extracurricular, and career paths and articulates the Study Abroad and transfer courses. Melissa works with the faculty and graduate students who instruct Econ undergraduate courses, and also provides assistance to students who run into issues within these courses. Melissa started with the Department of Economics in September of 2012.

Melissa is a proud UIUC alumna, with Bachelor's (B.S. ) and Master's (Ed.M. ) degrees, and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Education Policy, Organization & Leadership, Higher Education Administration. She has been working at UIUC since 2007, previously at the Alumni Association with Illinois Connection (advocacy network for the University) and also with student organizations. Before working on campus, she worked for many years in Chicago as a special event planner. Melissa is a big Illini fan and loves the UIUC campus, community, and enjoys working with such amazing and diverse students in the Department of Economics. She is a mentor with the CU One-to-One program and also a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) guardian ad litem.

StefStefanie Freeman Academic Advisor

Stefanie advises undergraduate students on academic and extracurricular matters within the department. She keeps students up to date on events and resources. Stefanie oversees the selection, participation, and programming for the Economics Ambassadors, a group of students who represent the Department at various events and who also receive various unique opportunities with alumni. She also oversees the hiring and development of Peer Advisors. If you are interested in getting involved with these groups, please contact Stefanie. Stefanie also works with At-Risk student programming, including students on probation or needing additional academic support. Stefanie arrived at the University of Illinois in June of 2013.

Stefanie graduated in 2009 with a degree in Public Relations and in 2012 from with a master's degree in College Student Personnel Administration, both from Illinois State University . During her time at Illinois State she advised first year students, the University Scholar students, and oversaw a student group on campus. Her past experience was advising students on the medical campus at Saint Louis University. Stefanie enjoys working with the Economics students!

KariKari Hutjens Academic Advisor

Kari advises undergraduate students in the Department of Economics. She coordinates most of the events and programming for undergraduate students, and has also taken on many different projects, including developing a mentoring program for new students. Kari joined the Department of Economics in October 2014, but has been working on the campus for over 7 years. She previously worked at The Career Center where she managed the student Resource Center and assisted with large events and programs. Kari enjoys working with students and planning student events.

Kari is honored to be called a "townie". She has enjoyed growing up in the area and taking advantage of all the University has to offer. In 2004 Kari received her Bachelor's from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she studied Psychology. She received her Master's in Counseling from Eastern Illinois University in 2009 and has worked with students of all ages.

NickNick Melrose Academic Advisor

Nick advises undergraduate students on academic and extracurricular matters within the Department. He keeps students up to date on events and resources, supervising the social media intern for the department. Nick works with the International Student Advisory Committee (ISAC) and assists in the development and promotion of research and honors opportunities for students. He also seeks out upcoming seminars, job talks, and career fairs to prepare majors for post-graduation.

Nick began as an adviser in the Department of Economics full-time in January 2015, but he has advised students within the Department as a Graduate Assistant since Spring 2014 and has taught several sections of ECON 198. Nick first came to the University as a graduate student in August 2013 and currently studies Higher Education in the Master's program at the University of Illinois. As an undergraduate at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, Nick Studied English and Spanish Literature and graduated in May 2013. During his time at UMKC, Nick worked as a new student orientation leader, as well as a writing consultant in the Writing Studio. Nick greatly enjoys working with undergraduate students to help them pursue their academic and professional goals!

SandySandy Delaney Undergraduate Receptionist

Sandy answers all undergraduate general questions and works at the very busy front desk in the Department Office.

Sandy joined the Undergraduate Economics team in Spring 2017.



Undergraduate Office Student Interns

The following students work with our undergraduate office on various projects. The Economics Department emails all Economics students open intern positions with information on applying.

Peer Advisors

Any student may meet with peer advisors to ask general class questions about classes, the student experience, registration help, and general questions. If students have course planning questions, please make an appointment with an Econ Academic Advisor.


Kelsey Bauer
Economics & Psychology Major
Expected Graduation: Class of May 2016

Kelsey’s office hours are located in 21 David Kinley Hall (the tutoring room) on Tuesdays from 10am-12pm, Thursdays 10am-12pm, and Fridays from 10-11:30pm.

Kelsey Bauer is a senior double majoring in Economics and Psychology. She is on track to graduate in May of 2016 and is from the northwest suburbs of Palatine, IL. Kelsey has been actively involved in several organizations on campus such as Phi Chi Theta Professional Business Fraternity, Transfer Advisory Group (TAG), and being a peer mentor for the Economics Department. This past summer Kelsey was a marketing intern at Cornerstone Transportation LLC. In addition to working for the Economics Department as a Peer Advisor this year she also holds a position for the Psychology Undergraduate Advising Department. Kelsey is particularly interested in behavioral economics and learning how behavior can be analyzed in the business sector.


Anuri Nwagwu
Economics Major, Business Minor
Expected Graduation: Class of May 2017

Anuri’s office hours are located in the DKH basement library (far north side) on Mondays from 2-4pm, Wednesdays 2:30-4:00pm, Friday office hours are located in 21 David Kinley Hall (tutoring room) from 11:00-1:00pm.

Anuri Nwagwu is a junior pursing a degree in Economics and minoring in Business. Anuri was born and raised in Evergreen Park, Illinois. She is currently an active member for the Illini Union Board Marketing Committee and African Cultural Association. While working as a peer advisor for the Department of Economics, she is also a student supervisor for the University Dining Services. After Anuri's expected graduation she plans to attend graduate school for her Master's in Business Administration.

Special Event Interns


Mya Khoury
B.A. Economics, Minor in Political Science
Expected Graduation: May 2018

Mya Khoury is a sophomore on track to graduate in May 2018. She is majoring in Economics and minoring in Political Science. Mya is an active team member of Design for America and is also a member of the freshman National Honor Society Phi Eta Sigma. Mya is a Special Event Intern in the Economics department where she is involved in the planning of multiple economic events.

Mya is very interested in traveling and learning about different cultures given that she was raised in Lebanon for six years. She's from Bloomingdale, IL, and in her free time she likes to read as many books as possible.


Alejandro Herrera
B.A. Economics
Expected Graduation: May 2017

Alejandro Herrera is a Junior majoring in Economics and minoring in Business. He is also pursuing a Marketing Information Lab Certification at the University. Alejandro plans to enter the Investment Banking or Consulting fields upon graduation. He has been an active member of the Economics club on campus since Fall of 2014. He currently works as a Special Events Intern for the Department of Economics where he helps develop and plan events for students and alumni to network and build career skills. During his free time, Alejandro enjoys running and boxing. He enjoys hanging out with friends, listening to new music, and eating pizza/sushi. Originally from the Southside of Chicago, he also enjoys traveling and can be seen shopping at local thrift stores regularly.

Ben Riley
B.A. Economics, Minor in Communication
Expected Graduation: May 2016

Ben Riley is a junior majoring in Economics and minoring in Communication. Ben plans to enter the Investment Banking or Commercial Banking fields upon graduation. He currently works as a Special Events Intern for the Department of Economics where he helps develop and plan events for students and alumni to network and build career skills. During his free time, Ben enjoys lifting weights and basketball. He enjoys hanging out with friends, listening to new music, and following his favorite sports teams. Originally from Peoria, he lived in Leicester, England for 4 years when he was in grade school.

Social Media Intern


Natalya Varkey
B.A. Economics, Minor in Business
Expected Graduation: May 2018

Natalya Varkey is a sophomore majoring in Economics and currently working on adding a Business minor. Natalya is the Social Media Intern in the Department of Economics and works on updating various social media accounts and advertising events held by the department. She is also involved in other activities on campus such as the Girls Next Door A Cappella where she is an Executive Board Member and the Public Relations Chair.

Natalya was born in Atlanta, Georgia and lived there for 10 years until she moved to Singapore. She lived in Singapore for 8 years, and had the opportunity to experience a variety of cultures, meet many people, and build a network of close friends and mentors at the Singapore American School. Her family just recently moved to downtown Chicago, and she has had a great time exploring the city. One of her favorite pastimes includes walks along Michigan Avenue and evenings spent catching live music concerts at Millennium Park.


Past Interns:


Xueying “Wendy” Tian
B.A. in Economics, Minors in Business & Statistics
Graduation: December 2015

Peer Advisor, 2015

Wendy completed a bachelor’s degree in Economics, with double minor in Statistics and Business. She worked as a peer advisor in Economics Department since the 2015 spring semester. In previous semesters, she also worked as the Treasury Assistant in Busey-Evans Resident Hall, the peer educator in the University of Illinois Extension-financial wellness program and the Event Planning Chair of the International Student Advisory Committee. Wendy Tian was a transfer from China, Harbin. The two years’ of study in America has broadened her horizon and inspires her to further develop herself in personality traits and professional skills. After her graduation in December of 2015, she will work on her master degree in accounting.