The National Association for Business Economics’ charitable arm, the NABE Foundation, jointly announced with nonprofit Americans for the Arts that Paul Vancea won the 2013 NABE Foundation Americans for the Arts Scholarship Award.

Vancea received the scholarship of $5,000 to support his undergraduate studies and career in economics during a March 4 luncheon at the 2013 NABE Economic Policy Conference in Washington, D.C.

"Awarding the NABE-AFTA scholarship has not only proven an important investment in maintaining the out-of-the box creative thinking we need at a critical time in our economic history, but it has brought people into higher levels of education who might not have had access otherwise,” said Diane Swonk, chief economist at Mesirow Financial and a NABE Foundation Board member, in a statement. “Our applicants must not only demonstrate excellence but need as well, something that provides returns not only to the NABE Foundation, but society as a whole.”

Recipients of the NABE Foundation Americans for the Arts Scholarship Award, which was established in 2008, must come from economically disadvantaged households and have attended public schools. Those chosen must demonstrate “long-term participation in the study of, creation in and/or performance in one or more art forms, including dance, music, theatre, literary, visual/media arts; excel academically; and have formally declared the intent to study economics for policy purposes, or in applications in the private and public sectors.”

Those selected are involved in a competitive review process, a pre-screening by American for the Arts, a review of finalists by a sub-committee, and ratification by the NABE Foundation Board.

“The reality of life in the 21st century is that the skills associated with artistic practices—creative thinking, self-discipline, collaboration and innovation—are vital to succeeding in a rapidly changing global economy,” stated Robert L. Lynch, president and CEO of Americans for the Arts. “It’s a pleasure to once again partner with the NABE Foundation to recognize student achievement in both the arts and economics. These awards reflect a fundamental belief that the arts are a key component in helping to prepare students to succeed, and indeed thrive, in the workplace and society of the future.”