In 2020 the Board participated in the American Economics Association's Summer Mentoring Pipeline Conference and mentoring breakfasts at the AEA annual meeting. The Board also supports the AEA's Summer Training Program.
In April and October 2019, November 2020, and April 2021, the Board hosted "Exploring Careers in Economics" an event that welcomed more than 200 students in-person and 5,000 online to discuss career opportunities and diversity in economics.
Board staff participated in the inaugural conference as well as the second annual conference of the Sadie Collective, an organization that encourages and supports young Black women in pursuing careers in economics and related fields.
Board staff has engaged in targeted outreach to colleges and universities with high enrollment of women and minority students in economics majors
The FedEd Outreach Program teaches personal finance and economics to high school students in the Washington D.C. area. FedEd leadership has focused on engaging with high schools in the D.C. area with a high representation of minority students. In 2020 the program reached 550 students in over 20 virtual classes. In addition, research assistants from the Board taught AP Macroeconomics to students at Benjamin Banneker High School in D.C.
The Board continued its teaching and mentoring partnership with Howard University's Department of Economics for a Financial Literacy/Statistical Software Programming class, with approximately 35 staff members involved as instructors, teaching assistants, and research mentors to 22 students.
The Board committed resources to Howard University to host the AEA Summer Program for five years, beginning in 2021. The Board will provide economic staff each summer to support an advanced-level Research Methods class. Board economists will serve as instructors as well as mentors to students from underrepresented communities within the economics profession.
Fed Listens – As part of this initiative, Federal Reserve officials directly engaged with representatives from a number of groups, including low- and moderate-income communities and minority groups, on issues pertaining to the Federal Reserve's congressionally mandated goals of maximum employment and price stability—the dual mandate. From February to October 2019, the Federal Reserve hosted 14 public Fed Listens events—one at the Board of Governors, one at each of the 12 Reserve Banks, and a System research conference at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. A summary report was issued in June 2020. In May 2020, the Board convened an additional event, "Fed Listens Update; How is COVID-19 Affecting your Community?" to hear perspectives on the impact of the pandemic. Panelists reported that low-income neighborhoods have been hit hard by COVID-19, and expressed concern that the pandemic will exacerbate existing inequality especially for African American and Latinx communities.
Community Advisory Council – The council provides ongoing and direct engagement between the Board and community leaders and experts on community and consumer affairs, with a particular focus on low- and moderate-income (LMI) populations. The council includes representatives of consumer, workforce, and community development organizations and interests, including from fields such as affordable housing, economic development, labor, small business, and asset and wealth building.
Perspectives from Main Street – The Federal Reserve conducted listening sessions hosted by the Reserve Banks across the country between July 2018 and January 2019 to examine bank branch access in rural communities and how rural consumers and small businesses use bank branches and how their communities have been affected by branch closures. The November 2019 report summarizing the Federal Reserve's findings notes that rural counties deeply affected by branch closures had higher poverty rates, lower median incomes, a higher share of their population with less than a high school degree, and a higher share of their population who were African American relative to all rural counties.
Connecting Communities® webinar series – The Connecting Communities® webinar series is a Federal Reserve System initiative intended to provide a national audience with timely insights and information on emerging and important community and economic development topics. The webinar series complements existing Federal Reserve Community Development outreach initiatives that are conducted through the 12 Reserve Bank regional offices and at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in Washington, D.C.