A Taste of Economics


Left: Douglas Wiener [right], a member of Selecto's fourth generation of coffee makers, led the tour for students in LCS's Philo economics course. Right: Students pepper Selecto representative, Doug Wiener, with questions about supply and demand for coffee and cacao in Haiti and abroad.

A group of Philo student's in LCS's capstone English course: Introduction to Economics paid a visit to Café Selecto, a local supporter of THP and producer of Haitian coffee and chocolate. 
The students thoroughly impressed their guide, Doug Wiener, a member of the family-owned company's fourth generation of coffee producers. Edouard Massena's first question: "What is Selecto doing to help Haiti?" Massena later commented:
I think that Selecto is a company that promotes the production of Haitian farmers in the countryside. They help those people's lives to improve by buying their product and giving them jobs. I see that they want Haiti to improve and produce more coffee and cacao.

All the topics that we have been learning with Mr. Branham - today we faced all of them. We talked about supply and demand, trade-offs and exchanges. It was amazing to see the head of Selecto talking about all of the same things. It is great to know that what we learn at LCS are things that we will face in business in the future. 

Volunteer Connor Branahm (Villanova '14) majored in economics before stepping in to the classroom as a teacher this fall. He accompanied the students on the trip:

The field trip to Café Selecto was a huge success because it allowed the students to see the real world application of economics along with experiencing how a successful Haitian business can be run. The students asked challenging questions that created interesting dialogue about production of goods and services along with discussion of strategies that could improve market outcomes. The students used their knowledge of supply and demand, inflation, elasticity of markets, and the principles of economics to figure out what made Café Selecto a successful company. We were also able to see the production process in action and the efficiency that can take place