Alumni Spotlight: DAVID NEUMAN, Principal at Trammel Crow Company
Why econ? Economics is a great way to learn the driving forces behind business and the economy. It teaches you the fundamental building blocks for markets and the financial system and a logical way to analyze problems and situations. I graduated from UVA with my economics degree in 1999.
I now work as the Principal at the Trammell Crow Company. My job is to create value developing commercial real estate projects in the MidAtlantic region for my company’s stakeholders- those are the employees, tenants, residents, municipalities and communities in which we develop projects. I spend much of my time analyzing the relationship of risk and reward for specific development projects and, therefore, spend significant time quantifying and qualifying inherent risks of a project.
Which economics course was influential and why?
They were all influential! Perhaps the most interesting and memorable, which may be surprising to some, was American Economic History because it gave real examples of the causes of economics forces at motion and what happened in America when those forces dominated the economy (e.g., the Depression, inflation). Economic cycles are inevitable and learning from the past is the best way to prepare for future cycles.
Some advice for current students?
- Don’t stress about formulas, small facts or trying to memorize things- focus on understanding the concepts. If you focus on the concepts and remember those concepts, that is how you change your way of thinking and become a smarter person.
- When nearing graduation, it’s easy for students to fall into a trap of what they feel they “should do”, such as traditional fields like consulting or banking, however, if that student doesn’t enjoy that field, then how can one have a long, fruitful career doing it? Further, perhaps a student’s core strengths don’t favor that field. Therefore, finding a career path that’s enjoyable and values that student’s strengths is essential.
- I got C’s in both ECON 201 & 202! So, keep at it and keep positive!