Grad Spotlight: Daniela Kwon

Daniela is a third-year student in the Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics (AFRE) Ph.D. program.

Daniela Kwon
Daniela Kwon, AFRE Ph.D. Student

Why did you decide to choose AFRE for your graduate studies?

MSU AFRE was the best fit for me as I’ve been interested in development economics. There were many faculty members working in the development field, and it seemed AFRE provides a lot of opportunities for graduate students to engage in development projects and fieldwork in developing countries. Indeed, I’ve been a part of a nationwide data collection exercise in Zambia and gained valuable experience. Also, all the AFRE members that I communicated with during the application and admission process were very nice and supportive!

What has been your favorite class in the AFRE major, and why?

I enjoyed development field classes the most, AFRE 861 (Agriculture in Economic Development) and the advanced course, AFRE 961. It was interesting to apply economic theory to my field of interest, learn new concepts and tools, and develop my own research based on what I learned in the class. Both courses provided a great reading list that covers topics and empirical methodologies that have been discussed and used in agricultural development.

What is one thing that you are looking forward to doing once we are able to return to campus? 

I really miss having lunch and catching up with colleagues in Cook-Seevers Hall’s kitchen. I look forward to connecting with them in person when we return to campus.

If you could have one song play every time you entered a room, what would it be, and why?

A Christmas carol because listening to it puts me in the holiday spirit, which is about family, love, and gratitude to me.

What thoughts instantly make you feel more relaxed?

Watching a beautiful Lake Michigan sunset! My husband and I take a trip to Lake Michigan beaches every summer. We really love laying down at the beach and watching the sunset, or sunset swimming. Thinking of those moments makes me feel much more relaxed, especially when it’s cold.

What is something about yourself that you should brag about, but usually don’t?

I think I’m quite good at cooking. I’ve been cooking almost every meal since I started to stay home and most of them actually turned out well.

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