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Dr. Larsen (UNMC) discusses health research with participants at the 2014 UNO Seminar at Union Pacific.

Successful Sixth Annual UP/UNO Center Seminar!
Topic: Teaching Healthcare Economics.

Participants pose in front of the Union Pacific motto. More photos...

The UNO Center for Economic Education, in conjunction with the Nebraska Council on Economic Education and Union Pacific Railroad, hosted 25 Nebraska teachers for a two day look at the Economics of Health Care. The event was hosted by Union Pacific Railroad.
   The seminar began with two sessions by Jennifer Davidson, President of the Nebraska Council on Economic Education, and Jamie Wagner, Ph.D.candidate. Sessions discussed reasons behind the increasing costs of healthcare, an introduction to the Affordable Care Act, state exchanges, insurance and adverse selection issues.

Steve Martin (BCBS Nebraska) discusses the Affordable Care Act with participants.

Steve Martin, President and CEO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska discussed, in detail, health care reform and the insurance industry.
   Participants also heard from John Levy, Director of the Heart Ministry Center in Omaha. The Center delivers healthcare and other needed services to the very underserved population in Omaha. Levy's presentation allowed participants to compare government funding of health care to entrepreneurial private sector solutions. Other sessions included health care policies at the national level, research and health care in the future, and promoting healthy lifestyles as a way to reduce costs.
   The event closed out with a discussion and pro/con debate from Senator Jeremy Nordquist, coauthor of the bill for medicare expansion, and Richard Clark, Director of Research for the Platte Institute. Many over-arching issues were discussed over the course of the two days, for example, “Is health care a right?” The Economics of Health Care was the 6th annual Summer Seminar for teachers event coordinated by Dr. Jim Dick and the UNO Center for Economic Education.

The mission of the UNO Center for Economic Education is to improve the economic literacy of current and future Nebraska and Western Iowa citizens by providing educational and training programs and materials for teachers of K-12 classes. The Center assists and encourages teachers in their efforts to teach the economic concepts needed by future citizens to become well-informed voters, wise consumers, and effective producers.

The UNO Center for Economic Education was created in 1985 and is hosted and supported by the UNO College of Business Administration and the Nebraska Council on Economic Education. It is affiliated nationally with the Council on Economic Education. It is periodically reviewed by the Council for Economic Education and currently holds their highest accreditation rating.

Director: Mary Lynn Reiser
Center Associates: James Dick and Kim Sosin
134T Mammel Hall, University of Nebraska at Omaha
Omaha, NE 68182-0048
Telephone: 402-554-2357; FAX 402-554-3393
Contact email

What can we do to help you teach economics and personal finance?

Workshops: Throughout the year the Center will offer economics and personal finance workshops for teachers reinforcing content and introducing new materials for the K-12 classroom. As workshops are scheduled for the coming year, information will be posted on the website.

Professional Development Activities: The UNO Center can work with school districts to plan activities for strengthening teachers' knowledge and classroom strategies in economics and personal finance, K-12. Programs can be designed for teacher in-service days and offer specific topics that districts may request. Contact the Center to arrange for specialized professional offerings for your district or school.

District Consultation: Does your district or school need to create a new course offering or revise standards and benchmarks in economics or personal finance? The Center staff can assist in working with faculty or district personnel as new courses are being created and give advice on the latest state and national standards in K-12 economics and personal finance.

Teaching to the Nebraska Social Studies standards: The UNO Center has many helpful links on its website, which is a part of EcEdWeb, a large repository of economic education materials. In an ongoing effort to assist school districts in Nebraska who are revising their economics curriculum to reflect the Nebraska social studies standards, the Center has designed several links on its website. All economics state social studies standards have companion online lessons that are listed on our special page for NE teachers, Nebraska NEbEcEd.

Additional resources include a curriculum guide for districts to provide language for revising curriculum standards and course objectives and sample evidence of student learning for the classroom teacher. The Nebraska State Social Standards in Economics have also been correlated with the National Voluntary Standards in Economics and the National Standards for Financial Literacy. An additional link provides teachers with online lessons for the classroom with examples for direct classroom instruction. Nationally designed and normed assessments are available from the Council for Economic Education. Information about obtaining the assessment instruments for your school or district can be found on the Council website at Council for Economic Education Assessments

Other classroom activities

The Nebraska Council on Economic Education sponsors several activities to accompany teaching in the classroom. The Nebraska Stock Market Game, provides a real world simulation for students in both the fall and spring semester. Details can be found on the Nebraska Council Website

In addition, the NE Council sponsors two annual student competitions, the Econ Challenge Online and the Finance Challenge Online.

Materials Review Library: The UNO Center staff is available to serve on textbook adoption committees and has review copies of the latest teaching materials from the Council on Economic Education for K-12 Economics and Personal Finance instruction.

 Nebraska Council on Economic Education

 NE Stock Market Game


 National Economics Challenge

 Fed Econ Education



 Foundation for Teaching Economics

UNO Center for Economic Education co-director Mary Lynn Reiser will be happy to talk with you at 402-554-2357 or

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