Chair of the Economics and Business Department, Associate Professor of Economics, and Assistant Dean of the College
B.A., Randolph-Macon Woman's College; M.A., Ph.D., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Elizabeth Perry-Sizemore is Assistant Dean at Randolph College (founded as Randolph-Macon Woman’s College), where she is also Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Economics. She earned her Ph.D. in economics from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 2004. She is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Randolph-Macon Woman’s College
Dr. Perry-Sizemore is the past director of the competitive and college-wide Student/Faculty Summer Research Program. She is the student research module coordinator for the National Science Foundation-funded Starting Point: Teaching Economics, a pedagogic portal project developed by economists in collaboration with the Science Education Resource Center of Carleton College. She is an elected Social Sciences Councilor with the Council on Undergraduate Research and a faculty advisor to the online student-refereed journal Illinois Wesleyan Undergraduate Economic Review (IWUER). Dr. Perry-Sizemore also serves on the board of the Virginia Association of Economists.
Dr. Perry-Sizemore advises independent undergraduate research projects in a number of her classrooms, but also engages in student/faculty community-based research collaborations with undergraduate students through paid summer research positions, independent studies, experiential learning opportunities, and her service learning public economics course. Currently, she and several students are examining the neighborhood effects of a local non-profit’s efforts to restore condemned residences in Lynchburg, Virginia. A number of her students have presented their work to the local community and at regional conferences. Others serve as student editors to the IWUER.
Dr. Perry-Sizemore is currently studying the effects of undergraduate
research experiences on both liberal learning and critical thinking skills. She
also studies the effects of state-supported postsecondary merit aid programs on
student achievement and institutional quality.
Professor Abell's research frequently takes him to San Lucas Tolimán, an indigenous community in Guatemala. The attraction is an array of community-based projects in the following areas: education, health care, housing, land development, job apprenticeship, honey bee farming, water systems, fuel efficient stoves, reforestation, experimental farming, and coffee. Moreover, these projects have a philosophical underpinning based on E.F. Schumacher's subsidiarity principle. By using local resources and by carrying out most stages of production right there in San Lucas, economic multiplier effects circulate locally, rather than leak away to Guatemala City or the United States.
Success stories from the developing world are few and far between. Professor Abell has been writing about San Lucas's programs that offer financial security, hope, and self-esteem for over a decade now. His approach to research is straight-forward. You jump right in and help lay a water line, help a family pick coffee, or build a fuel-efficient stove before you start writing about it. His overall approach to economics has been shaped by his years of travel to San Lucas and is consistent with the title of E.F. Schumacher's book, Small Is Beautiful: Economics As If People Mattered. Even in his most technical courses, he tries not to stray too far from this basic idea.
Associate Professor of Economics/Business
B.S., Mississippi State University; M.S., Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin
Mark Harrison's first career was in engineering and operations management. After earning a degree in chemical engineering, he spent 12 years in the international oil business, including 10 years in the Phillippines, where he served as a petroleum engineer and management consultant.
He then earned a Ph.D. in economics at the University of Texas at Austin in 1998. He began teaching business and economics, and was lead faculty in the startup of two MBA programs, one face-to-face and one online.
At Randolph College since 2010, Professor Harrison teaches Principles of Management, Leadership, Marketing, International Business, and Strategic Management. In his business courses, he challenges student teams to analyze real-world problems and recommend concrete courses of action. He also enjoys teaching economics.
An advocate of vita abundantior, Professor Harrison enjoys SCUBA diving, travel, and residential architecture. Dr. Harrison has made roughly 400 SCUBA dives in a variety of locations such as the South China Sea, the Bali Sea, the Caribbean Sea, and the Red Sea. In 1998 he designed and built a house in accordance with the precepts of architectural theorist Christopher Alexander (the Temple Mountain House in Peterborough, New Hampshire). In 2007 he crewed on a 42-foot catamaran for a transatlantic voyage, from Chesapeake Bay to the Azores to Gibraltar. In 2009 he visited the Sekolah Bisnis dan Manajemen at the Institut Teknologi Bandung (Indonesia) as a Fulbright Scholar, and in 2010 he canoed in the Wabakimi Wilderness of Western Ontario, Canada.
Associate Professor of Economics/Business
B.S., M.B.A., Bowling Green State University; Ph.D., Kent State University
I earned my BSBA and MBA degrees from Bowling Green State University in Bowling Green, Ohio and received a Ph.D. in Finance from Kent State University, also in Ohio.
I have professional experience in the areas of banking and corporate accounting. I have taught a wide range of courses in the past: finance, accounting, management, and economics. The students and their education are my main priorities. In keeping with this focus on student education, I enjoy conducting research that is applied and pedagogical in nature. I am particularly interested in topics that improve the classroom experience for the students and enhance my teaching effectiveness. Specific areas of research have included financial education/pedagogy, stakeholder theory, and firm value.
As for outside interests and activities, my wife, Denise, and I enjoy sports (biking, jogging, tennis, etc.), travel and relaxing (when possible).
I sum up my thoughts on business, and specifically finance, education as follows: I believe financial education is of value to students whether they pursue a career in the discipline or not. In particular, basic financial literacy is an important life skill. As a teacher, I would like students to gain an understanding of, and an appreciation for, finance and to have had a positive experience along the way.
Associate Professor of Economics
B.A., M.A., Ph.D., University of New Hampshire
Professor Eric Mitchell is one of the most versatile economists you will ever encounter. In addition to teaching many of our applied microeconomic courses, he also teaches a number of business courses as well.
He has a keen intellect, a deep appreciation for history and philosophy, and is extremely quick with numbers. Give him a handful of numbers - corporate income, stock values, and so on - and he'll quickly translate these numbers into useful statistical data - and without the need of a calculator.
On top of his graduate studies at the University of New Hampshire (1991 Ph.D.), he draws upon years of experience in the corporate world. From 1973-1982 he worked for A.M. International, Ingersoll Rand, and Software International. He even ran his own consulting firm (addressing worker compensation issues) from 1983-1985.
While in graduate school at UNH, he became part-owner of a cutting-edge bar called the Stone Church in Newmarket, New Hampshire. His bar brought in such luminaries as Bonnie Raitt, Suzanne Vega, and Country Joe and the Fish. It even once made the front page of the Wall Street Journal as an example of the creative recycling of an unused church. Life in New Hampshire, given its position as the nation's first presidential primary state, was always interesting. Over the years, Eric has met George Bush, Bill Clinton, Al Gore, and Joe Biden as they stumped for votes through the state. In 1972, during his undergraduate years, as a waiter at the New England Center, he served meals to both Richard Nixon and George McGovern. His bar even hosted a fund-raiser for Jesse Jackson during his presidential run in 1984, complete with all-network television coverage and Secret Service protection.
Eric has been with Randolph College/Randolph-Macon Woman's College since 1989. His areas of research are many and varied. He has studied the nuclear, textbook, and beer industries, and has analyzed voting patterns in the country. All of this valuable research makes its way straight into his economics and business courses from which students benefit immensely.
Eric's hobbies include golf and bicycling. He likes to remind folks that he once beat Arnold Palmer in a round of golf. Well... sort of. He played the Westchester, NY Country Club in 1977 a week before the Westchester Classic tournament (later the Buick Open) and shot a score of 73. During the opening round the next week, Arnold Palmer shot a 78 and proceeded to miss the cut! More recently, in 2005 Eric biked across the country (3,400 miles!) from California to Florida. In 2006, he biked 400 miles in a ride along the Erie Canal.