Kooistra graduates from MIT, wins thesis award

Published 4:44 pm Thursday, July 19, 2012

Russell Edmund Kooistra of Campobello graduated June 8 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a bachelor of science degree in political science and a minor in energy studies.

He was awarded the Stephen G. Meyer Outstanding Thesis Award for his independent research titled “Dirty Money:  The Effect of Environmental Regulation on FDI,” which assessed the effect of lax environmental regulations on the economies of 32 developing countries.

During his four years at MIT, Kooistra was a member of the men’s soccer team and served as co-captain. In addition he worked as an undergraduate research assistant for several faculty members, including Jonathan Gruber, a major architect of the Massachusetts and National Healthcare reform policies, and Nazli Choucri, who focuses on cyber international relations and sustainability concepts and is current president of UNESCO’s scientific advisory committee.

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Kooistra is a member of Phi Delta Theta fraternity and has served in various positions, including social chairman and secretary.

Kooistra plans to pursue a career in law and has been awarded a three-year scholarship to attend the George Washington School of Law, where his current interests include intellectual property rights and environmental law.

Kooistra was co-valedictorian of Polk County High School in 2008 and is the son of Paul and Carol Kooistra of Campobello.

– article submitted