Thursday, February 10, 2022

Economics Professor Dr. Thomas Birch has been a staple of UNH Manchester’s business program since he joined the faculty in 1987. Fusing economics with liberal arts principles, Birch’s classes explore the interactions between business and economics, politics, communication and technology.

Birch sees the world through multiple lenses, and he teaches economics that way—seizing the opportunity to guide students through unique facets of the subject. His ambition for his students extends beyond the classroom, encouraging them to apply economic principles as both consumers and innovators. Birch’s commitment to his students’ success earned him the UNH Excellence in Teaching award in 2011.

Birch grew up in the Midwest, earning his bachelor’s degree at a small liberal arts college in Ohio before pursuing his M.A. and Ph.D. in Economics from Indiana University at Bloomington.

What do you like best about your job?

The diversity of students that I get to meet, and their motivation to learn.

What is your favorite UNH Manchester memory?

Watching students gain confidence and mature intellectually.

Tell us your favorite:

  • Manchester restaurant:  Mangia on Elm Street
  • New Hampshire destination: Beach
  • Book: Tender is the Night
  • Movie: Fitzcarraldo
  • Childhood book: Swallows and Amazons
  • Childhood TV show: Get Smart

What are your hobbies? 

Any sport I can still manage to play without injuring myself.

Best vacation ever?

Our honeymoon in Paris.

We’d be surprised to know that…

I usually wake up between 4 and 5 a.m.—as Henry David Thoreau says, “Only that day dawns to which we are awake.” Sometimes I take a nap later (not at the office, however).

Which 3 famous people, living or dead, would you want at your fantasy dinner party?

Shakespeare, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Cleopatra.

As a child, what did you wish to become when you grew up? 

A professional baseball player (then a teacher).

Kassidy Taylor | Marketing & Communications, UNH Manchester |