Jason Duong

Jason Duong
Photo by David Schmitz

Dean’s Scholar

Major: Economics
College of Social Sciences

Why did you choose your major?

I chose Economics as my major in order to understand why people make the decisions that they do with the limited resources that they have.  I connected with the field because it uses a scientific approach to explain and understand how events, decisions, and policies affect individual markets and the economy as a whole.  I chose Biology as my minor because understanding biological processes and concepts contribute to my appreciation of medicine.

What does receiving this particular award mean to you?

To me, the Dean’s Scholar award represents the effort that I have committed to my learning and my personal development.  Additionally, receiving the award has given me an opportunity to recognize my family members for the emotional support and advice that they have given me throughout the years.

Who has had the greatest influence or impact on your life?  In addition, tell us about a SJSU faculty member who contributed to your academic success.

My parents have had the greatest impact on my life.  They have inspired me to challenge myself in both academics and in extracurricular activities in order to connect with my peers in a meaningful way.  

SJSU faculty members who have contributed to my academic success are Dr. Daryl Eggers and Dr. Rui Liu.  Dr. Eggers introduced me to Biochemistry and has allowed me to conduct research about how water affects the molecular interactions involved with protein folding.  Dr. Liu has been my professor for several of my Economics courses.  She is always eager to answers questions from students and has cultivated my interest in applying mathematical models to Economics.

Describe an experience that has shaped who you are today.

When I was preparing my college applications, I had a difficult time deciding what my major would be.  Mr. Dwyer, my high school Economics professor who obtained a higher education degree after performing poorly in high school, emphasized the value of investing in an education because he obtained a GED and then continued on to obtain a Bachelor’s Degree at UC Davis.  He also encouraged students to pursue Economics because of its value in decision-making.

What would you say to other students to encourage or inspire them to attain academic excellence?

I would tell other students that improving academic performance can prove personally rewarding because, in addition to the higher grades, the skills and knowledge that are acquired in the process will carry over to the work environment and life in general.  In my opinion, searching for areas to improve skills or understanding always brings benefits.  Also, connecting with supportive professors and working with students with similar goals and interests can be sources of inspiration.

What makes you a Spartan?

I am a Spartan because of my determination to learn and to overcome obstacles.  Due to the willingness of my fellow Spartans to aid me along my journey, I have been able to attain much success.


Nominated by Rui Liu
Professor, Department of Economics

“Jason majors in economic and minors in biology.  I have had him in three of my classes.  He impresses me as a very intelligent, hardworking and polite person.”