Our Centers

We've developed a network of Centers for Economic Education at colleges and universities across the state. These centers, along with the Minnesota Council on Economic Education, provide professional development opportunities to teachers in addition to supporting student and community programs throughout the year.

Minnesota State University - Mankato Center for Economic Education

Michael Spencer, PHD(507) 389-5325  |  michael.spencer@mnsu.edu  |  Center Website

Minnesota State University - Moorhead Center for Economic Education

Gregory Stutes, PHD(218) 477-4027  |  stutes@mnstate.edu

Gregory Stutes is a Professor of Economics and the Director of the Center for Economic Education at Minnesota State University Moorhead.  Educated as an economic historian, Professor Stutes has used that broad training to develop a career as an educator.  He is always the first to experiment with new teaching pedagogy and is always willing to help colleagues, high school teachers, and pre-service teachers learn more about economics and the best practices to teach.  With more than 20 years in the classroom and over a decade as the Center Director, Professor Stutes is a leader in economics education.

St. Catherine University Center for Economic Education - MN Center for Diversity in Economics

Center Website
Kristine Lamm West, PHD(612) 962-5686  |  klwest@stkate.edu
Kristine Lamm West completed her PhD in Applied Economics at the University of Minnesota and joined St. Catherine University in 2012. Her primary fields of interest are labor economics, program evaluation, and the economics of education.  Recent research projects investigate topics ranging from unions and performance pay to the impact of all-day Kindergarten on maternal labor supply.  Her research has been published in The Journal of Human Resources, Industrial Relations, Economics of Education Review, and education Finance & Policy. Dr. West was selected for the Excellence in Teaching and Advising Award in 2015 and recently completed a sabbatical during which she established the Minnesota Center for Diversity in Economics.  Prior to earning her PhD, she taught high school social studies at Washburn High School in Minneapolis including classes ranging from 9th grade Civics to College-in-the-Schools Economics.

St. Cloud State University Center for Economic Education

Center Website
Cynthia Fitzthum, PHD(320) 308-2170  |  cjfitzthum@stcloudstate.edu

Cindy Fitzthum has worked at St. Cloud State University (SCSU) since 2013 in many different capacities; including Director of Economic Education, Social Studies Teaching Faculty Director, K-12/5-12 Coordinator, American Democracy Project Coordinator and Winter Institute Director.  Prior to SCSU, she taught high school social studies at Sartell High School and Princeton High School while also adjunct teaching at SCSU and Anoka Ramsey Community College.  Cindy has a MA degree in Economics Education from the University of Delaware and a doctorate in Higher Education Administration from SCSU.  She also holds a MN 5-12 Social Studies teaching license and a K-12 MN Principal license.  Her professional work includes research on student debt and curriculum writing with the Council for Economic Education.  She has written numerous economic education curriculum packages, facilitated workshops for K-12 teachers and presented at state and national conferences.


Lynn MacDonald, Interim Center Director 2023/2024(320) 308-2264  |  lcmacdonald@stcloudstate.edu

Lynn is an Associate Professor of Economics at St. Cloud State University and she enjoys working with students through both teaching and advising. Her areas of interest are public finance and urban economics. She has published articles in Public Choice, Journal of Housing Research, and Empirical Economic Letters, to name a few. Her current research explores the relationship between Hispanic-Serving Institutions and college outcomes. Past president of the Minnesota Economic Association.

University of Minnesota Extension for Economic Education

Mary Jo Katras, PHD(612) 203-6403  |  mkatras@umn.edu

University of St. Thomas Center for Economic Education

Agapitos Papagapitos, PHD(651) 962-5686  |  a9papagapito@stthomas.edu

Dr. Papagapitos has taught at the University of St. Thomas since 1990.  He holds a PhD in Economics with specializations in open economy macroeconomics and economic development.  He regularly teaches undergraduate courses in these areas, as well as in the area of monetary economics, banking, and financial markets.  He has published studies on exchange rates, economic integration, social capital, and sports economics.  He has presented several MCEE-sponsored workshops on preparing to teach high school economics to pre-service and in-service teachers, as well as workshops on financial literacy and deficits/debt.