Susan Elizabeth Chen has been named associate professor of agricultural and applied economics in the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

She is one of a number of new faculty members recently hired in the college this academic year. New positions were identified to bring talent to the college's focus areas, including food, health, the environment, and community viability. The new faculty members are distributed across teaching, research, and Extension.

Chen's research specialty is in health economics. Her research focuses on the health care sector and also on the effects of government expenditure programs such as social security, nutrition assistance programs, and education initiatives on the behavior of individuals. Her current research applications focus on obesity and health, labor supply and health, and school policy and child disability.

Chen received her bachelor's degree in economics and chemistry from Cornell University, her master's degree in agricultural economics for the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and her doctorate in economics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.