Department of Economics

Jennifer Fullmer Harris

  • Graduated: 1990
  • Field: University Administrator

Jennifer Fullmer Harris, who graduated in 1990 with BAs in Economics, German and International Relations, works at the CSU, Chico Research Foundation, Chico State Enterprises.  She helps faculty, staff and members of the various Research Foundation centers on campus develop grant proposals.

While a sophomore, Harris switched from Biology to Economics after realizing the latter was as essential to our daily personal and professional interactions as the former. She also enjoyed the fact that Economics, as a behavioral science, suited her growing interest in international cultures. She made two other key decisions to shape her career: to study overseas during her junior year (International Programs, Heidelberg ’87-88) and to complete a 6-month cooperative education program in Washington, D.C. during her senior year. This paid internship at U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)(opens in new window) introduced the Chico native to life in many developing countries of our world.

Jennifer joined the Economics Student Union (Chico State Economics Club ) to get to know the “mellower” side of ECON professors and students. “Ironically, club antics brought out amusing, fanatical behavior by those who competed in the students vs. faculty/staff softball games of the late 1980's,” Jennifer stated in an email.  “Join and enjoy: the coveted bragging rights (or revisionist history) have no expiration date!”

After graduation from Chico State, she was hired at USAID where she served 11 years in three roles: Contracts/Grant Specialist(opens in new window) (a field where being an ECON major will often get your foot in the door), Country Affairs Officer(opens in new window) for the Baltics and Poland, and Environmental Protection Specialist in Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union. Preferring a “left coast” life, she volunteered a year at the Mendocino Coast Botanical Gardens(opens in new window) and worked 6 years as a buyer for a local manufacturing company before returning to Chico to work for the University Research Foundation.

In a recent email Harris said that she wished more were aware of the brilliant research and project direction that faculty and staff finesse every day at CSU, Chico. “Advice for students: check out the growing field of project management(opens in new window), project evaluation(opens in new window), or research administration(opens in new window) in which economics plays a vital role (i.e., where you can make a good living in the art of “teamwork”). Also, get to know the knowledgeable counselors at our campus Career Center and familiarize yourself ASAP with federal internship(opens in new window) opportunities and deadlines.”  (Last Updated 12/13/13)