Brussels, Belgium

Ezra Kohrman


My name is Ezra. I am a second-year economics major, and this summer I had the privilege to intern at a Brussels-based think tank called Bruegel. There, I formed meaningful relationships with my colleagues, who all hailed from different parts of Europe. Getting to know their background and receiving mentorship along the way was immensely gratifying.

My favorite project I worked on was a data analysis of raw material imports related to the EU's renewable energy transition. I connected with the mission of trying to better understand, on a granular level, whether European countries have the materials necessary to facilitate a transition to renewable technology. The actual work I was carrying out was also equal parts challenging and rewarding. I was given the freedom to write Python scripts to discover different trends in the trade data. As it was my first-time coding outside of the classroom, I used trial-and-error to continuously iterate and improve my code. I ran into roadblocks constantly. Yet slowly but surely, I learned new techniques and refined my existing skills. Then, a more experienced researcher looked over my program and discussed ways to make it more elegant and efficient. Receiving detailed feedback in this one-on-one manner provided more insights than I ever received in my large computer science classes on campus.

Outside of the work, the opportunity to live in Europe was incredibly fun. I traveled nearly every weekend to a new country and had some of the most exciting and culturally enriching experiences of my life. I feel immeasurably indebted to your generosity in allowing me to have a summer full of new friendships, cultural experiences, and moments of self-growth.