Pitzer Spotlights

2003-2004 Spotlight Archives

Future Major League Baseball Commissioner?

Matt Williams '04 Knows GNP and RBI

Matt Williams '04When Matt Williams '04 came to Pitzer in the second semester of his freshman year, he was ready for a change. Having spent a semester at the University of Texas, Williams decided he wanted to go to a smaller college.

"I was recruited by other colleges in high school to play baseball for them, but decided I wanted to go to Texas. It was after Paul Svagdis [the Pomona-Pitzer Baseball coach at the time] recruited me for two years that I finally decided to transfer to Pitzer. I am forever indebted to him for all of his persistent efforts because in many different ways, transferring has been the best decision I have ever made."

Williams said he got a great feeling for the school because he no longer felt like just another number and Pitzer was a small school with the resources of a large school.

Location wasn't the only change Williams made. After taking a few economics classes, he changed his major from architectural engineering to economics.

" I became interested in economics because it offers real world insight into the social outcomes that arise from the allocation of scarce resources, which is important for understanding and hopefully affecting public issues," Williams said.

Since his transfer, Williams has taken part in several projects, including working for the U.S. Department of Commerce in the Bureau of Economic Analysis as an intern-economist and taking part in the Model United Nations Conference in Boston in February 2003.

"When I worked for the Bureau of Economic Analysis I measured the GNP in relation to public education and wrote a 102-page working paper and an abstract for another paper," he said.

His paper, "Real Output Measures for the Education Function of Government: A More Relevant Approach," and the abstract will be published by the time he graduates from Pitzer. Though he will be unable to attend, the abstract he wrote will be presented at a conference in London.

With graduation upon him, Williams is busy planning for the future.

"I have applied for a Fulbright Fellowship in The Netherlands to conduct economic research," he said. "I would like to travel and work with foreign researchers because it would be nice to get a different perspective."

Eventually he plans to go to graduate school in the Northeast for economics but admits that he has his eyes on a dream job.

"I would love to be the commissioner of Major League Baseball one day. I love the game and I love the business aspect of it as well," he said.