Patricia Smith, Ph.D.
Biography and Education
Professor Smith earned her undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Wyoming and both graduate degrees in economics (M.A. and Ph.D.) at Virginia Tech. She joined the UM-Dearborn faculty in 1988.
Professor Smith’s research focuses on the relationships between health and socioeconomic status. For example,
- She published a book on whether participation in the food stamps program causes obesity among low income Americans.
- She has also examined whether asthma leads to lower wealth accumulation or if wealth protects against asthma.
- A recent publication shows that income and wealth are not major predictors of fast-food consumption among adults, but hours worked and regularly reading ingredient labels are.
- Her most recent publication examines whether incorrectly viewing yourself as overweight or underweight is associated with employment and earnings.
Professor Smith teaches principles of microeconomics (ECON202), the economics of poverty and discrimination (ECON325), and quantitative methods for economists. The two quantitative methods courses are: ECON305: Statistics for Economics, in which students learn to collect, evaluate, organize, and analyze data in order to make better decisions; and ECON4015: Introduction to Econometrics, in which students learn to use linear regression analysis to estimate economic relationships and to test economic theories.
Ph.D., (Economics) Virginia Tech