North Central College - Naperville, IL

Edvard Joseph: Taking an Economic Perspective Home

Edvard Joseph came to North Central from Port au Prince, Haiti, thinking he’d be in Naperville for a year. When the earthquake hit on January 12, 2010, his school there, Université Notre Dame d’Haiti, collapsed as a result. But the devastation had a positive outcome for Joseph. “I was supposed to go back but North Central and the U.S. State Department provided assistance for me to remain here,” he says.

After the quake, it took him four days to reach family members, who reported only minimal damage to their home.

An economics major, Edvard has become very active in International Club and Finance Club and tutoring in French. He’s gained business experience from volunteering as the student comptroller for Student Governing Association, where he approves all student club expenses. He’ll also be traveling to Bhutan in South Asia for a research project on “gross national happiness,” an economic and anthropological analysis of happiness. The results will be presented at an undergraduate research conference. In addition, Edvard has been studying German and already speaks Creole, French, Spanish and English.

Edvard learned that the analysts look at how decisions will affect the well-being of the population, taking into account variables like time balance and religion. His research involved comparing the strengths and weaknesses of the GNH compared to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as an economic indicator. He presented his findings at a national conference and on campus at the Rall Symposium for Undergraduate Research.