A standout high school soccer player, Giulia Rabbito was recruited by Division I programs from Connecticut to Colorado. She chose UMass Lowell, the school closest to her home in Chelmsford, Mass., for several reasons.
“Growing up in Chelmsford, I always knew about the school, and it felt familiar,” she says. “I didn’t get a full scholarship, but UMass Lowell gave me enough that, with my parents’ help, I won’t have any loans to repay when I graduate, which is really a big relief. And the team’s so welcoming here.”
Rabbito started out as a business student. After taking required classes in microeconomics and macroeconomics her first year, she switched her major to economics – but kept a minor in marketing and took some finance classes, too. She says she will probably go into business when she graduates, but with a solid grasp of the fundamentals.
“I liked business a lot, but I took micro and macro my freshman year and it was so interesting – the market and supply and demand – it was just my speed,” she says. “And economics is a huge part of business, so if you get a degree in economics, you can actually go anyplace. You learn more about the mechanics of business, rather than just how to sell something to someone.”
She also loves the professors in the small department, especially her first professor for microeconomics, adjunct faculty member John Edward ’03 ’05.
“We learned about economies of scale and how you can tell if businesses are going to fail. We looked at real businesses,” she says. “All the professors in economics are absolutely amazing – and they’ll connect you with people, even after college.”
The professors love her, too.
“They get very excited when there’s a girl in the class,” Rabbito says with a laugh, noting that economics is a heavily male-dominated field.
Rabbito encourages more young women to join the major, and she’s friends with nearly all of the students in the new Women in Economics group started by Asst. Prof. Kelly Hellman.
Is playing a Division I sport stressful while studying in a tough major, or vice versa? Rabbito, a rising senior, says no: She actually works smarter and harder in her classes during the fall playing season.
“I’m the kind of person who needs a routine,” she says. “Soccer gave me that routine, so it helped me with my time management. I’m way more focused and motivated because I don’t have all this free time. It’s worked very well for me.”