Hiram College

Kathleen McGarry will visit Hiram College as a visiting Phi Beta Kappa scholar and deliver two public lectures on Oct. 30, 2014. She will present:

  • “Intergenerational Transfers from Parents to Children,” at noon in the Library’s Pritchard Room.
  • “Fifty Years of the War on Poverty: What it has Meant for the Elderly,” at 6 p.m. in the Library’s Pritchard Room.

In addition to the public lectures, McGarry will deliver guest classroom lectures in an array of subjects on Oct. 31, 2014.

McGarry has served as a senior economist at the White House Council of Economic Advisers and has been a research associate with the National Bureau of Economic Research since 1999. She is currently a professor of economics at the University of California, Los Angeles, and was the Hyatt 1972 Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College from 2007-2009.

Hiram College is one of 10 percent of colleges in the nation to hold a Phi Beta Kappa chapter. Phi Beta Kappa, the national honorary society for excellence in the liberal arts, was founded in 1776 at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. There is no higher honor in American academia than membership in Phi Beta Kappa.

Lecture summaries are as follows:

“Intergenerational Transfers from Parents to Children”: Parents invest an enormous amount in their children when the children are young (just ask any mom or dad). Perhaps surprisingly, this support continues long after the children are grown and have formed their own households. The talk will analyze the patterns for giving from parents to adult children, including the prevalence and magnitude of these transfers to adult children and which children are the primary beneficiaries. We have also all heard the rant, “Mom always liked you best.” In transferring resources to children, do parents play favorites? Also of interest, how does the distribution of transfers depend on the form — cash transfers during a parent’s life, versus bequests or schooling investments?

“50 Years of the War on Poverty: What it has Meant for the Elderly”: When Lyndon Johnson announced his “war on poverty” in his State of the Union address on Jan. 8, 1964, the poverty rate for the elderly was approximately 35 percent. In the 50 years since the speech, the poverty rate for the elderly has fallen to just below 10 percent, below that of other age groups and less than one-half of that for children. McGarry will discuss the role of various social insurance programs in this dramatic decline and explain how the poverty rate is currently calculated and the extent to which these numbers accurately depict the situation for the elderly.

[btn link=”http://www.hiram.edu/centers-of-distinction/ethics-theme” color=”grey” size=”size-m”]Learn more about this year’s ethics theme, Age and Aging.[/btn]