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2011-2012

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  • Thumbnail for Education and the Bismarck model : improving longevity and reducing healthcare costs in the United States
    Education and the Bismarck model : improving longevity and reducing healthcare costs in the United States by Collins, Hayden J.

    This thesis analyzes the relationship between societal wellbeing and life expectancy from an international sample. The United States has a significantly lower life expectancy at birth than other wealthy, foreign democracies. This paper evaluates the significance of a multitude of diverse variables, such as obesity, education, alcohol consumption, and purchasing power (collectively referred to societal wellbeing), in explaining the variance of life expectancy at birth from an international sample. The data covers societal wellbeing indicators of the international sample from 1980-2009. An OLS regression is used to determine the importance of each variable in explaining the variance of life expectancy. Foreign healthcare models that effectively address these nonmedical determinants of longevity will be used to suggest policy for healthcare reform in the United States. Healthcare reform is an incredibly intricate topic that can be approached from a variety of methods. How does societal wellbeing affect longevity? What are the sources of variance between other countries and the United States? How can these variances be used to prescribe policy for healthcare reform in the U.S.? These questions are integral to addressing the topic of healthcare reform and demonstrate the importance of international collaboration to improve the health of our nations’ population.

  • Thumbnail for Education as an investment
    Education as an investment by Walcott, William C. P.

    The value of education is paramount in the life of every human being. This thesis will test how, and to what degree, institutional prestige can affect starting and mid-career salary for college graduates. This thesis will also test the significance of four other variables - the average acceptance SAT score, the school acceptance rate, the percentage of classes with fewer than 20 students, and the tuition level. It was found that prestige as a dummy variable is statistically significant only when considered alone. When all variables are tested simultaneously, SAT scores and school acceptance rates are far more important factors determining future salary. This research will serve the greater purpose of educating prospective college students on the importance of their decision and on which college reputation contributing factors are the most important in regards to future salary potential.

  • Thumbnail for Expensive decisions : how students choose their college majors in a changing economy
    Expensive decisions : how students choose their college majors in a changing economy by Putnam, Laura

    All undergraduate college students face the important decision of what major to graduate with. This important choice affects their future careers and current happiness while in college. A number of factors go into this decision-making practice, including ability, preferences, and demographic trends. This paper hypothesizes that students also care about the current state of the economy. The data used in this multinomial logit model comes from eleven years of data on Colorado College graduates. After analyzing the results at the division and major level, the hypothesis proved to be weak in the Colorado College population. Six out of twenty-eight majors significantly responded to the independent variable measuring the national unemployment rate, although none of the majors responded drastically. Overall, an increase in the unemployment rate led to more economics, mathematical economics, and environmental studies majors while a decrease led to more physics, religion and English majors.

  • Thumbnail for Fifteen and pregnant : the determinants of teen pregnancy
    Fifteen and pregnant : the determinants of teen pregnancy by Petersen, Claire McGovern

    Teenage pregnancy and parenthood continues to be an issue of national health, despite the past two decades of declining teen pregnancy and birth rates. There are a number of different factors that have contributed to this decline, including sex education and a rapidly evolving political dialogue. This paper examines the determinants of teen pregnancy and teen birth rates across various race and ethnicity categories using an ordinary least squares regression model. Overall, the empirical results point towards comprehensive sex education and an increased political dialogue surrounding women’s reproductive rights as strong contributors to the decline, as well as acknowledging the importance of information and education regarding teenagers sexual decision making.

  • Thumbnail for Fundamental attribution error in letters to shareholders from the commercial airline industry
    Fundamental attribution error in letters to shareholders from the commercial airline industry by Wolff, Michael Lee

    Previous studies of annual reports that have looked at attribution theory in letters to shareholders found that CEOs and corporations tend to internalize positive performance outcomes and blame negative performance results on external factors. A past study of the railroad industry compared two similar railroads and found that the successful company made noticeable changes to its attributions, whereas the company that did not declared bankruptcy. Past research relating success or failure to attributions has been confined to a small number of industries. This paper aims to expand attribution literature by studying the U.S. commercial airline industry, which is essential to everyday social and business interactions that affect many Americans. This thesis examines causal relationships, attributions, and other themes within shareholder letters to determine patterns that might reveal insights on success or failure. Employing content analysis, this paper found that the previously observed pattern of attributions held, that legacy carriers acknowledged the importance of low-cost structures and point-to-point route systems but could not effectively alter their business models, and that low-cost providers made partially inaccurate attributions but were not victims of dangerous attribution error.

  • Thumbnail for Hedonic pricing of Californian Cabernet Sauvignon : a tiered description of regional affects
    Hedonic pricing of Californian Cabernet Sauvignon : a tiered description of regional affects by Reyda, Thomas Andrew

    The paper attempts to expand upon the collective reputation theory relating to the hedonic pricing of wine. Data was collected concerning Cabernet Sauvignons of California and a hedonics model was developed based on relevant literature. The goal was to examine the results for different scopes of region of origin, as well as introduce a collective reputation variable based on the work of Tirole. As expected, greater detail in region of origin provided superior results as well as pricing benefits for smaller sub regions of origin. The collective reputation variable behaved opposite to the expectation, with a negative effect on price. This differs from Tirole’s theory because of several fundamental reasons including: level of consumer information, multicollinearity issues and greater descriptive power of regions of origin.

  • Thumbnail for How can colleges increase enrollment through marketing?
    How can colleges increase enrollment through marketing? by Nkambule, Banele

    The objective of this thesis is to improve higher education marketing and, thus, increase enrollments. The key to successfully enhance recruitment efforts and marketing strategies is knowing students’ preferences, evaluating the institution, and learning more about the competition. This thesis creates a model that shows the effects of admitted student’s preferences on enrollment. Data from Admitted Students’ Questionnaire are used to test this model. Moreover, the thesis also creates a model that shows higher education institutions’ performance and how performance is affected by competition. The higher education institutions examined in this thesis are Colorado College, Colgate University and Wake Forest University

  • Thumbnail for How to value companies in developing countries
    How to value companies in developing countries by Carter, Lee

    This thesis studies the effect of macroeconomic factors on investor valuation in developing countries. Currently, more and more investors are looking to developing countries for investment, but few of them know how to accurately value companies in these countries. Investors feel that there is extra risk involved when investing in developing countries, but how much? And what determines this risk? This study first finds the discount rate, the rate by which investors discount a company in a foreign country as compared to a similar company in the United States, in each of 17 countries. Then, these discount rates are compared to macroeconomic variables that describe development, infrastructure, and business environment in a country. We believe that if a country is less developed and has less infrastructure in place investors will place a larger discount on companies in that country.

  • Thumbnail for Hungary and the concerns of measuring sustainability
    Hungary and the concerns of measuring sustainability by Kóbori, Ádám

    For the last ten years, the words ‘sustainability’ and ‘sustainable development’ have been used by many prominent political and economic leaders. But what is sustainability really and is it possible to accurately measure the sustainability of countries’ economies objectively? This study focuses on three sustainability models, namely the Environmental Sustainability Index (ESI), the Sustainability Assessment by Fuzzy Evaluation (SAFE) and the Sustainable Human Carrying Capacity (SHCC), and their evaluations on the sustainability of the Hungarian economy and environment. Furthermore, it also surveys the opinion of Hungarian undergraduate economics students on the Hungarian economy and its sustainability. The study shows that the ability of current sustainability models and measures to give accurate portrayals of countries and regions is problematic, because they use different definitions of sustainability, use different environmental and/or economic indicators, do not differentiate between the impacts of the individual indicators, and are able to be used for political purposes. This is especially true for Hungary, as the country’s economy is crumbling with increasing social unrest, yet sustainability models give it a high ranking. Also, the Hungarian students’ views on the country’s sustainability depend on what school of economics they were taught in, and what they think about Hungary’s past, current and future economic and environmental situation.

  • Thumbnail for Illegal contacts : the impact of felonious conduct on future wages
    Illegal contacts : the impact of felonious conduct on future wages by Young, Christopher Thomas

    This thesis has the purpose of improving upon the study of behavior and its impact on the payment of NFL players. Previous studies have laid the groundwork for investigating this topic and this paper continues to delve into the subject. An Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) was used to analyze the data concerning salary determinants with a focus on illicit behavior. The adjusted models were met with mixed results and suggest that behavior may only have a mild impact on salary, if at all.

  • Thumbnail for Indecision on Elm Street : the effect of humor in advertisements through the lens of the elaboration likelihood model
    Indecision on Elm Street : the effect of humor in advertisements through the lens of the elaboration likelihood model by Schroeder, Noah Robert

    This study provides a theoretical analysis and an empirical investigation of the Elaboration Likelihood Model of persuasion. The theory postulates that persuasive information is processed through two distinct psychological routes: central and peripheral. The framework of the ELM is used as a basis for the exploration of the effect of humor as a peripheral cue in both print and video advertisements. A total of 108 participants were randomly assigned into two experimental groups that varied in elaboration likelihood in order to assess the impact of humor on product attitudes, advertisement attitudes, and purchase intentions. As expected, I find that participants in the high elaboration condition did not exhibit favorable attitudes or increased purchase intentions toward the products advertised with humor. The contradictory behavior of participants in the low elaboration condition to the theory provides useful insights for experimental design in future research within the realm of the ELM.

  • Thumbnail for Indicators of childhood obesity : battling an epidemic
    Indicators of childhood obesity : battling an epidemic by Cooke, Christopher Mathew

    From 1980 to 2008 childhood obesity rates have almost tripled for children aged 6-11 and have more than tripled for adolescents aged 12-19. This epidemic of obesity as shown no signs of slowing down in the future. This information paired with an almost 1000% increase in fast food sales from 1975 to 2009 paints a grim future for our nation's health. Since obesity has been concretely linked to health problems such as diabetes and certain types of cancer, it is a responsibility of our nation to diagnose and cure the disease that is claiming so many lives, whether directly or indirectly. It is for these reasons that this paper attempts to discover the indicators of childhood obesity. The results of this paper are that prevalence of fast food restaurants and excessive time spent in front of a screen are major indicators of childhood obesity. Another major indicator is meals eaten as a family per week, which is a proxy variable for parental supervision. Hopefully this information will lead to further regulation of the fast food industry and its children-targetted advertising sectors.

  • Thumbnail for Innovation through recessionary times in the U.S. auto industry
    Innovation through recessionary times in the U.S. auto industry by Boccard, Travis Hale

    The United States automobile industry has been a staple in the economy for over a century. However, the auto industry has come upon hard times, two of the Big 3 required government aid within the last decade. The purpose of this thesis is to take an in depth look towards when innovation will take place in the industry, primarily looking towards whether or not recessionary times spur innovation. The hypothesis is that there will be a negative correlation between recessions and the amount of innovation within the industry. There were multiple problems with multicollinearity throughout the regression analyses that were run in this study. Ultimately there was one significant variable found in three regressions, this being the price of crude oil. The null hypothesis was neither proved nor disproved in this study.

  • Thumbnail for Laptop use in the classroom : a cost/benefit analysis based on participation
    Laptop use in the classroom : a cost/benefit analysis based on participation by Vargas, Matthew Voyta

    The College classroom environment has changed since the advent of the personal computers. More and more students are frequently bringing their laptops into the classroom at colleges around the country. While those students bring their laptops to the classroom, instructors’ perceptions of laptop use continue to change. Therefore, the issue of this generation is whether or not students understand their own perceptions of the costs and benefits of laptop use given the costs of diminishment of learning in the classroom and the benefits of improved learning through software and programs on the laptop. The purpose of this thesis was to determine whether or not students whom bring their laptop to the classroom understand if their use of laptops are improving or diminishing their learning experience based on participation. This research surveyed six classes in the Economics Department during Block Three of the 2011-2012 Colorado College school year. The survey information was then be used for regression analysis in order to determine dependent variable impact on the independent variables: LISTEN, ASKQUES, ANSQUES, and DISCUSS.

  • Thumbnail for Leading a new generation : a cross-generational study on adapting leadership and motivational techniques to best fit the newest working generation
    Leading a new generation : a cross-generational study on adapting leadership and motivational techniques to best fit the newest working generation by Baird, Andrew Kyle

    A survey was distributed to the student body of Colorado College (152). The resulting study analyzed leadership and motivational techniques already in place that have a strong presence in today’s business world. It also analyzed generational gaps and the similarities and differences between each of these generations that currently inhabit the workforce. Through a theoretical analysis of The Baby Boomers and Generation X and the results obtained from the survey questioning a highly motivated and driven group of individuals in Generation Y, a conceptual model was formed adapting the techniques already in place to better fit the newest working generation. This model was formed to give leaders a leading style that is based on a unique, intelligent, and motivated group of individuals at Colorado College, providing a theory in which multiple leaders can adapt to effectively lead Generation Y workers in any environment.

  • Thumbnail for Left-handed pitchers in Major League Baseball
    Left-handed pitchers in Major League Baseball by Behrend, Theodore Steven, Jr.

    This thesis is designed to explain the number of left-handed pitchers in Major League Baseball (MLB). The main focus behind this study is to determine the optimal number of left-handed pitchers a MLB team should employ to maximize success. The MLB has far more left-handed players on average compared to left-handed people in society so that leads us to ask why. The hypothesis of this thesis is Major League Baseball teams should employ between 18% and 30.1% left-handed pitchers to maximize their success. I am measuring success by the team’s regular season number of earned runs against and the team’s winning percentage. This study will take all 30 MLB teams in to account and look over a time period of the last 20 years. There will be two separate regressions in this thesis, one to see the affect left-handed pitchers have on earned runs against and one to evaluate left-handed pitchers effect on winning percentage. I will also use independent variables such as strikeouts, walks, homeruns against, yearlong payroll, attendance, pitchers average age and many others to see what makes the largest difference on a team’s success.

  • Thumbnail for Mama didn’t raise no fool! Youth characteristics influence on Colorado Springs crime
    Mama didn’t raise no fool! Youth characteristics influence on Colorado Springs crime by Fuwa, Daniel M.

    In the southeast region of Colorado Springs there is an isolation of crime. Along with high crime rates, this region experiences lower socioeconomic living, a gang presence, and more violent crimes compared to the rest of the city. Because of the recession, Colorado Springs’ crime operations are experiencing budget cuts which may result in an influx of crime. This study models five regressions looking for youth characteristics that are linked to criminal outcomes such as conviction and gang membership. Family, friend, and substance use variables are predicted to have strong relationships with conviction and gang membership outcomes. Results of this study can direct future crime prevention research as well as implemented in early detection of delinquency models.

  • Thumbnail for Middle class miracle : the Internet’s role in Brazil’s growing class C
    Middle class miracle : the Internet’s role in Brazil’s growing class C by Pimenta, Mariana Dias Rabelo

    Brazil’s economic growth has significantly increased the size of its’ middle class, also called class C. Among, the many factors that are allowing this phenomenon to happen, the Internet is relevant since it opens doors and gives new opportunities to a group that for decades have been in the outskirts of society. There is extensive literature that links the Internet to growth and development. The Solow Growth Model supports this idea since technological change spurs growth to a new steady-state, allowing higher purchase power and better living standards. Due to the nature of the model causality problems were a possibility. Hence, the current study utilized the Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) adapted from Roeller and Waverman’s study to solve for endogeneity.

  • Thumbnail for Middle school matters : a duration model analysis of college enrollments
    Middle school matters : a duration model analysis of college enrollments by Benson, Cassandra Michele

    Since the 1980s women have surpassed men in undergraduate college enrollments. This trend for a higher percentage of women in higher education has continued, and in 2007 women officially dominated all levels of higher education including doctoral degrees. Understanding why women have increased enrollments is simple; education acts as a social equalizer and provides opportunities to women that were not previously obtainable. The puzzling factor of this progression stems from men’s trajectory, which plateaus around the 1980s. This project addresses the question of what factors inhibit or promote longer tenures in the academic pipeline for men and women. The hypothesis argues that men and women react differently to certain family factors such as parenting style, income, the age of the mother, household issues, and youth behavioral characteristics. These differing reactions would be the driving force for the gender education gap in the United States. Using an Ordinary Least Squares estimate, a Tobit estimate, and Kaplan-Meier survival analysis, it appears that gender itself is not the determining factor of duration in college. While men and women are not statistically different from one another, they do react different to parenting styles, income, and role model influences of parents. This study corroborates previous work on the importance of income and innate academic ability for duration in college. However, this study also finds that middle school performance is highly influential of determining an individual’s college enrollment. Therefore, to increase the likelihood and duration of an individual’s college education middle schools should focus on providing an environment conducive to engaging both men and women.

  • Thumbnail for Name brands versus store brands : a look into consumer perceptions of store brands
    Name brands versus store brands : a look into consumer perceptions of store brands by Babb, Wyatt

    Store brands have been gaining popularity and market share over the past century and nearly all large retailers have their own private label brands. The central focus of this study was to explore consumer perceptions towards these brands and the factors that influence these perceptions. We focused on brand name, packaging and store reputation. A taste test experiment was designed to test only these factors and revile consumer’s true perceptions. The tests were conducted but not enough data was collected to make meaningful conclusions. Although our results were not conclusive we found some interesting patterns and behaviors.

  • Thumbnail for Occupy Colorado : analysis of activists’ decision-making incentive structures
    Occupy Colorado : analysis of activists’ decision-making incentive structures by Moe, Edward Andreas

    This thesis uses the Occupy Wall Street movement as a case study to analyze how individuals decide to take part in social movements. Moving away from rational utility models, it applies a emotion-based model of decision-making that better explains collective action participation. Interviews with individual activists provided information about their incentives, which were then compared with results from the social psychology research on behavior in group contexts. The results mirrored this literature, and showed that when deciding to act, individuals calculate a broad range of incentives, many of which are entirely non-material. As they come to identify with a movement, these incentives are consciously and subconsciously altered to favor participation. Simultaneously, collective identification comes to guide decisions to participate. Recognition of the specific incentives relevant in social movement contexts should facilitate understanding of movement dynamics for academics and movement organizers alike.

  • Thumbnail for On the relationship between gender wage differentials and market power in U.S. manufacturing
    On the relationship between gender wage differentials and market power in U.S. manufacturing by Wiggy, Mitchell

    There has been a persistent earnings gap between male and female workers in the United States over the past decades. This study examines one possible cause for this discrepancy by analyzing its relationship with market power within the manufacturing industry. Theory suggests that firms with market power have more leverage to practice discrimination toward a specific group of workers, resulting in a wage differential. This study finds that market power does not play a statistically significant role in the creation of wage differentials between male and female workers.

  • Thumbnail for Personality and job satisfaction
    Personality and job satisfaction by Fukunaga, Emily

    The best interests of companies are served by ensuring that employees are satisfied in their jobs. This thesis examines the relationship between personality and job satisfaction, and how motivation affects that model. Gender is also a component to this study, which observes the impact gender has on personality. Both quantitative and qualitative data was collected from companies operating across industries, and used for analysis. This study strives to reveal strategies on how best to motivate employees and increase levels of job satisfaction in the workplace.

  • Thumbnail for Predicting success in international women's soccer
    Predicting success in international women's soccer by Ourisman, Mary Chloe

    While many previous economic studies focus on determining the role various socio-economic factors on men’s international soccer performance, very few studies performed on women’s soccer exist. A gross discrepancy between the top ranked men’s and women’s international soccer teams compels this study, which includes measures of gender equality as a hypothesized deterministic factor for women’s international soccer rankings. The hypothesis here suggests that where women are afforded more opportunities in society, they will experience success in other realms of life as well. An OLS regression using FIFA/Coca Cola women’s rankings as the dependent variable yielded that while the utilized proxies of gender equality are not related to soccer performance, the average IQ of a country and the number of casual soccer players a country claims serve as highly predictive factors when determining which countries will field successful women’s international soccer teams. Whether or not a country has a communist government and the number of years a country’s team has been affiliated with FIFA were also found to have significant value when predicting the FIFA rankings.

  • Thumbnail for Promoting residential renewable energy adoption
    Promoting residential renewable energy adoption by Nordblom, Crosby Van Curan

    As society has progressed over time, we have developed extensive unsustainable consumption habits, and we will have to deal with the future consequences of those actions. Problems, like climate change, have developed into intricate issues that will require innovative marketing and promotion methods, as they will involve the alteration of solidified social patterns and constructs. Through analyzing products like residential renewable energy, we can better understand how sustainable and responsible behavior can be fostered from the individual level to a national scale. That is why this study asks what factors explain homeowners’ decision to invest in renewable energy? Through exploring past research, understanding current markets, and surveying potential and current renewable energy user, this study attempts to identify the most prominent barriers and effective promoters of residential renewable energy.