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Exploring the Mind and Markets: Dheer's Story of Double Majors leads him to University of Arizona

Dheer Avashia, a Next Genius Scholar is progressing in his path as he moves forward to the University of Arizona.

Dheer Avashia has recently graduated from Sewanee: The University of the South, Tennessee, with a double major in Economics and Psychology. He is a BSc Honors student in Economics & Math.

During his grade 12 at The Riverside School, Ahmedabad, Dheer found out about the Next Genius Scholarship Program and saw it as a chance to turn his dreams into reality.

Being a Next Genius Scholar, he could interact with many other people who were also going to a different country, a group of people whom he could relate and feel comfortable with. Through the Next Genius group interviews, he met one of the other scholars who was also going to Sewanee too, which made him feel good as well as relieved that he knew someone and that he was not alone.

While sharing about his journey at Sewanee, Dheer shared that when he joined, there were no other Indians except for him and his fellow Next Genius scholar, even though the community has been growing with time. He said, “Although it did not come as a cultural shock to me, it felt different to not see any similar faces around. However, I took it as a great opportunity to understand a new group of people and be a part of a different culture.”

Dheer is very enthusiastic about trying out different things. Out of this curiosity, he decided to do a double major in Economics and Psychology. As unrelated as the two seem to be, Dheer aspires to become a Behavioral Economist, so that he can frame policies using behavioral methods rather than just monetary or fiscal ones. It is his dream job, towards which he has been working day in and day out. He has also taken up some research with one of the faculty members in the Economics department to understand this theory better.

Apart from excelling at his academics, Dheer has also been doing various part-time jobs. Currently, he has even worked as a Marketing Manager at the University’s Wellness Centre, along with being a part-time barista. He shared, “The skills that I have learned in Economics and Psychology are what I have been applying at all of my internships. For me, it is important to develop skills more than occupations.”

Further, he spoke about the University situation at the time of the COVID pandemic. He said, “The college is located in a remote area, which was the biggest plus point. We were not permitted to leave the University unless it was very important and there was a whole procedure for submitting an application for it. This is the reason why there were hardly any COVID positive cases in the University throughout that time.”

Towards the end, Dheer shared, “The fact that I made it to the university by myself has really changed me. It has made me responsible and taught me a lot.” He has also given some advice for the future Next Genius Scholars: “While filling up your Next Genius applications, make sure to plan everything out and be efficient.” He added, “College is busy only if you make it busy, so just make the most of it. Do a job and make sure that you are growing because of it. Whether you are doing it for the money or for your personal growth, just go for it. Along with this, try and understand the culture there. Interact with the new people you meet and move out of your boundaries. Use your time wisely and always remember that you have more time than you think you do.” To apply for the Next Genius Scholarship Program, visit


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