Economics Personal Statement One

The way in which people respond to Economic stimuli is curious; occasionally irrational, yet strangely consistent. Common sense, yet open to sensationalism. Whilst reading the newspaper or The Economist I often think about the multitude of external factors, the numbers behind a story and the effect they may have had on the present. Ultimately, my aim is to be able to understand peoples’ motivations and their outcomes on markets.  Understanding a population’s behaviour can be related to mathematical modelling using statistics and interpreting results to extrapolate future outcomes. Applying a range of approaches can be used for one economic problem, resulting in more than one solution, and it is this heterogeneity that inspires me to explore the field of Economics further. 

My desire to advance in the field of Economics was further confirmed by exposure to the workplace. After a placement in the Loans Department at NatWest Plc., I gained a broader conception of how different financial products and services keep businesses operating efficiently, and felt that this was the type of institution I was interested in revisiting. Witnessing how decisions are made in a Stocks and Bonds department, numbers analysed, graphs and spreadsheets consulted, demonstrated that the whole process of trading is a fluid and dynamic use of advanced algorithms and modelling in order to comprehend data, and I was left enthralled. Seeing trends throughout, I was encouraged to discuss anything of note, and some of my suggestions were acted upon. I gained much fulfilment knowing my contribution was of value. To gain a broader experience of Economics in practice, I arranged a placement with a chartered accountant where I recognised the significance of fastidiousness when working with figures, as well as expanding my knowledge of how businesses manage capital. This access to the modus operandi of business intrigued me, so I spent more time with CHP Accountants and was invited to work on a client’s portfolio. 

I have always had a passion for reading and as my interest in economic matters grew I sought out contemporary and past works. I thoroughly enjoyed Taleb’s The Black Swan and The Return of Depression Economics by Krugman; they emphasised events that through hindsight we often make appear inevitable; but which are nigh on impossible to predict. I noticed this was closely related to recent economic downturn, in that the effects of the sub-prime mortgages are evident now, but perhaps could not have been foreseen; a very clear black swan event. I have run a successful car-wash for two summers, managing both employees and time. I have taken part in the Sony Small Business Challenge, achieving Second Prize in the Dynamo Competition. Attending the Enterprise in Action workshop allowed me to develop my teamwork, communication and problem solving skills which I then applied in the Young Enterprise program. Attending a Debate Club, Model U.N. and European Youth Parliament Debates, I proved I can form a constructive opinion on a variety of subject matters, giving balanced input using research and analytical skills exercised by Economists. To participate in the school community, I often tutor students in Chemistry and Maths. Finding the students completely at ease with a concept which was once alien to them is very rewarding. Furthermore, it is said the best way to learn is to teach, and tutoring has aided me greatly when approaching new ideas in self-directed learning. 

Academia aside, I swim regularly and am a qualified scuba diver. I am also a keen mountaineer and indoor climber and hence appreciate careful planning and the responsibility for the safety of myself and those around me. I am eager to receive the rigors of University education and look forward to personal development and embarking on a career in investment banking. I aim to put into practice the advice I received from my manager at NatWest; ‘Always set goals or you won’t have anything to achieve’.

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