ANET Lab Seminar Series: Maria Zhu

Maria Zhu (Department of Economics, Syracuse University): Beyond the "Old Boys' Network": Social Networks and Job Finding at Community Colleges

Abstract | Research and popular discourse on social networks in higher education have focused on elite universities, even though most students do not attend such institutions. This paper sheds novel light on how classmate networks at community colleges influence job finding. Using data from a state community college system linked to matched employer-employee records, I exploit quasi-random variation in class section enrollment within courses to detect network effects. I find students are significantly more likely to get a job at a classmate's firm later than at the firm of a peer enrolled in a different section of the same course.

Bio | Maria Zhu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics at Syracuse University. Her research primarily focuses on topics in labor economics and the economics of education. Her current work focuses on topics in social networks and racial disparities.