2023 QSA Graduating Seniors

Congratulations to our third cohort of graduating seniors in the Quantitative Social Analysis Minor Program! 


Courtney Leung



Maddie Ryan

Maddie Ryan, an Economics major, decided to pursue the QSA minor because of its compatibility with her major and to further develop her quantitative, statistical, and experimental skills. By pursuing the QSA minor, Maddie has been able to apply her developed skills to her major, one example being through “observation of data collection” and determining if the “information is a representative sample”.

Maddie’s favorite minor class Methods of Data Collection: Social Experiments, Quasi Experiments, and Surveys was due to its small class size and the increased opportunity for engagement. This included discussion about the concepts and the statistical ideas that were being taught in a deeper aspect.

After graduation, Maddie will be employed by a tech consulting company as a Product Manager. To future minors, Maddie would like to share that it is a great opportunity to gain insight to other courses that are listed under different major programs that have many similarities to the fields of study that are of interest to the student.





Reagan Powers

Reagan Powers, an Economics major, decided to pursue the QSA minor to apply her economic math and statistical skills to “practical settings”. The QSA minor allows Reagan to bridge the gap between theory and real-life applications while also letting her explore her interest in behavioral economics and study different decision processes across different fields.

Reagan’s favorite class was Strategic Behavior and Regulation of Firms. This course focuses on applying theories from foundational Econ 200-level courses to practice and supports her in gaining a better understanding of different theoretical models. Taking Reagan’s experience from her internship on mergers and acquisitions and applying it to the class made her realize its versatility and describes the class as interactive and a “hands on” environment!

After graduation, Reagan will be employed at Industrials/M&A Investment Banking. To those interested in pursuing the QSA minor, Reagan would like to emphasize that the minor opened the opportunity to take courses that she was previously interested in exploring, but otherwise would not have been possible to take. Reagan took advantage of this and took more classes than required! She would advise future minor students to “explore courses outside of your typical range of interests”.


Marcus Ellinos
Marcus Ellinos

Marcus Ellinos, a Political Science major, wanted to pursue the QSA minor equip himself with quantitative skills and tools to investigate empirical questions that he frequently encountered in political theory, as well as to understand other people’s attempts to address these questions. To Marcus, QSA provided him with solid foundations to develop his quantitative reasoning skills for future courses

Marcus’ favorite minor class was Applied Regression Analysis (STAT 224), taught by Professor Burbank who was considered by Marcus as “a wonderful explainer”. The course helped him “build intuition around basic statistical concepts.”

After graduation, Marcus plans to pursue a joint JD-PhD, with a doctorate in Political Science. He wants to share with future minors to take courses with certain repeated material, as what he stated “Hearing a different professor explain a concept from a different perspective (or just reviewing the concept again) helped me get a better understanding of that concept, and I think the same could be true for many other people.”

Efe Oral

Efe Oral, an Economics major with a specialization in Business Economics, decided to pursue the QSA minor to strengthen his skills in “analyzing numerical data and writing critical commentary”. Efe also has an additional minor in Media, Arts, and Design

Efe believes that the QSA minor provided an additional perspective to look at general topics such as economics. After finishing the business track for his Economics major, Efe says that the QSA minor classes developed his “mathematical reasoning”. Efe’s favorite minor class was Social Stratification.

After graduation, Efe will be employed at KPMG NYC Office and hopes to work at an investment advisory in the future. Efe advises students to explore classes that are of interest regardless of whether they will be “useful” in their career or not. Efe says that exploring these types of classes proves to be enjoyable and “having fun makes learning so much easier!”.


Taylor Rijos

Taylor Rijos, an Anthropology major, had a profound interest in public health, which requires both qualitative and quantitative skills. For developing quantitative skills, she chose the QSA minor over other programs because of its interdisciplinary nature, and that it “can be tailored to fit a student’s interests.” Through QSA, Taylor has gained quantitative abilities and skills in epidemiology, social and behavioral health, and opinion research, and considered them invaluable to address complex and multidisciplinary public health concerns.

Taylor’s favorite minor course was Epidemiology and Population Health as it solidified her interest in the public health field. As Taylor indicates, the course instructor, Professor Lauderdale, provided “extensive historical context”, and allowed “students to explore their own interests in a self-driven final project” where students got to design their own research proposals.

After graduation, Taylor will start her Master of Public Health program in the Food Systems and Health concentration at Cornell University. She is looking forward to honing the statistical skills she gained from QSA by applying them to “pressing public health concerns in food production, access, and consumption.”


Taylor wants to share with future minor students to “not be afraid of taking classes outside of your traditional interests!” To give an example, the Artificial Intelligence for Public Policy course that she took to fulfill the minor requirements was not related to her focus areas, but it turned out to be one of the best classes she took at UChicago.

Micah Wilcox

Micah Wilcox, an Environmental & Urban Studies and Sociology double major, wanted to build and develop quantitative analysis skills for public policy and social science research. His specific interest in incorporating “data analysis and visualization into a future career in urban policy research, design, and implementation” motivated him to pursue the QSA minor. To Micah, QSA provided him with technical skills for related quantitative analyses and keen insights of those skills’ value.

Micah’s favorite minor class was Spatial Cluster Analysis with Dr. Pedro Amaral, as the course not only provided a chance to learn GeoDa for detailed spatial analyses but also had a class format that allowed students to choose their own research project to analyze.

After graduation and in 2023-2024, Micah will work as an Executive Fellow in the California state Executive Branch, where he will help work on statewide policy issues for an executive department. Micah’s long-term goal is to pursue a career in urban policy, and especially “public transportation policy and planning at transportation providers like Los Angeles Metro.” He is also interested pursuing a joint master’s degree in public policy and urban planning.


To Micah, QSA was a great experience that he would “recommend to anyone interested in pursuing a career in public policy or the social science-related fields because the minor explicitly focus on data analysis’s applicability in those fields.”