Catherine Mahoney

Murray 1693 ScholarCatherine Mahoney


Oakton, Virginia (Oakton High School)


Economics and Mathematics

Why W&M?

It always felt right. My heart had been set on William and Mary since I was 12 years old. When I was notified of my status as a Murray Scholar finalist, my heart skipped a beat. One morning several weeks later, I opened my phone and saw a missed call from the College and a text reading "Pls call me ASAP so I can offer u a Murray Scholarship. We are excited 2 give you the offer & want u @ WM!" I sat in shock for a few minutes, called my parents, sat on the decision until after lunch, and promptly accepted. The scholarship, the incredible opportunities for research and study abroad, and the amazingly beautiful setting made coming to W&M an easy decision.

What I've Been Doing Recently

I’m currently using my 1693 research grant to conduct research in time series econometrics.  I’m examining methods for constructing confidence intervals for impulse response functions of vector auto-regressions.  In particular, I’ve been working to write simulations that test the effect of block size on the width and coverage of block bootstrap confidence intervals. 

This past summer, I interned at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago in the Economic Research Division.  I examined the relationship between measures of adult skills and intergenerational income elasticity across countries.  Check out a Fed Letter that was published about it.  Before that, I took a semester to live in DC and intern at the White House Council of Economic Advisers, where some of my work made it into the 2014 Economic Report of the President.  Take a look at chapters three and six if you’d like to see a little of what I got up to.  

My Time at W&MCatherine in Uganda

In addition to all the opportunities at the White House, the Fed, and the Economics Department at William and Mary, this place has helped me do some pretty cool things.  I’ve done research in development economics that gave me the opportunity to travel to Uganda twice to perform field experiments that examined risk attitudes and investment behavior in fishermen.  Here’s a video about our work and a paper we published about the relationship between social conflict, fisheries, and food security in the Lake Victoria Basin. I’ve also traveled to 19 countries, debuted at the International Debutante Cotillion, and danced at the National College Dance Team Championship.  

Recent Honors

I am the two-time recipient of a Glenn Scholarship, an award given to academically distinguished students in economics.  In December, I was inducted into the Alpha of Virginia chapter of Phi Beta Kappa.


After graduation, I’m getting certified to teach yoga and then taking a six month trip around the world.  Following that, I plan to pursue a graduate degree in econometrics.