About the Department

Economics courses at Central Lakes College give students the opportunity to study the production, consumption and distribution of goods and services. But more importantly, students learn how these forces affect them in their daily lives. Energy costs, business cycles, employment, unemployment, housing, health care, and policies are just a few of the topics that come alive in the study of economics. Courses taken will ensure students are well prepared for transferring to a four year school where they can find leadership and management positions in need of these skills.

Economists are employed by many industries including businesses, banks, governments, universities and international agencies in careers that will be personally and professionally fulfilling. Economics is a very versatile degree. When comparing starting salaries for four year college majors, an Economics Majors have one of the highest starting salaries. However, most students taking economics in college do not complete a major or minor in the subject area. Business, Finance, Marketing, International Studies, and Accounting majors are required to take economics classes. Almost all of these majors require semester courses in Macroeconomics and Microeconomics which we offer at Central Lakes College. To prepare for these courses, CLC also offers an introductory economics course: The American Economy.

Department Information

Department Description: A wise sage once suggested that economics is the study of peoples’ efforts to satisfy their unlimited wants by utilizing their limited resources. Economics studies the cost implications of an individual making a decision to go to college, the cost implications of a society making a decision to go to war, and everything in-between. Economics might be the most broadly applied of the social sciences because economists believe that all human decisions have economic costs and, therefore, are worthy of economic analysis.

Department Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify and apply alternative explanatory systems or theories.
  • Identify and communicate alternative explanations for contemporary social issues.
  • Identify the methods and data that historians and social and behavioral sciences use to investigate the human condition.
  • Examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods or cultures

Select this link to view a complete listing of Economics course offerings.

Special Program Requirements: Courses in economics involve reading, writing, and analyzing information and data. College level skills in these areas are important.

Transfer Opportunities: Economics courses offered at Central Lakes College fulfill requirements within the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum, Central Lakes College’s graduation requirements, and readily transfer to four-year institutions.

Career Opportunities: A bachelor’s degree in economics will open doors into a number of career fields including the following: management, public administration, public policy, banking, education, business policy, and many others. As well, it can be used as a step to advanced degrees in many fields.


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Michael Hopps

Geography Instructor
Phone: 218-855-8173
Brainerd E147
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Dave Piasecki

Economics Instructor
Phone: 218-855-8007
Brainerd E205A

Student Testimonials

Lance Zetah

Lance came and guest lectured in my American Economy and Macro economics classes. He took the three CLC Econ classes from me and he wanted to let the students know how valuable an economics degree is. He is graduating from the University of Minnesota Duluth in May after only three years because of PSEO college credits and he has already been hired by Minnesota Power for a pretty good salary and full benefits.

Employment Statistics

For more information regarding employment statistics, career salary information and estimated job growth, follow the resource links below:

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