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My Desire to Get Economical Education in Keio University

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Standing by the busy streets of Irvine Spectrum, California, I used to observe the variety of people who pass through the fast-moving crowd; some were shoppers, a freelancer looking for a coffee shop, or a businessman pacing to get to their job on time.

From cheerful hot dog vendors, exchanging invigorating conversations with his daily customers, to those who pass carelessly, gazing only at the small screens of their smartphones, each and everyone, regardless of their diversity in occupation, ethnicity, or religion, showed one of the two reactions to the rapidly changing environment; there were those who could not hide their excitement for the “new,” whereas there were also those who ponder upon the “old.” Stepping onto the plane bound for South Korea, these conflicting ideas of “change” became the basis of the many questions that have arisen throughout my high school career.South Korea, currently one of the most economically productive yet cut-throat competitive countries in the world, is where the warm smiles of waiters and customers transformed into the pressing of cold metal buttons on the panel of an ordering machine created for the sake of expediency.

From the dusty air, rudely buzzing cars, and human interaction that have ceased to exist offline, my encounter with my native country was more foreign than ever. I searched for the kind of familiarities I had grown to expect only to realize that even in the midst of such agonizing changes, I need only to strive to answer an age-old question posed by some of the great minds, such as Henry David Thoreau: “How shall we live (and produce)?” The world as we know it is drastically changing. The first industrial revolution developed the use of water and steam power in order to mechanize production. The second industrial revolution utilized electricity to enhance rapid production. The third employed manifold technologies to efficiently automate production. Through the first three industrial revolutions, the value of human labor has understandably diminished; however, mankind has done a fine job of adapting to these changes and has somehow maintained the value of human labor at a respectable level. Now, we’re in the midst of a fourth industrial revolution where an amalgamation of distinct technologies allows us to produce results in virtually all spheres of industry with unprecedented precision and efficiency. Economically speaking, this rapid development in technology enhanced productivity, the amount of economic output created from a limited unit of input especially in terms of labor hour, and could possibly fuel more economic progression in the future. Indeed, the fourth industrial revolution has the potential to raise aggregate global income levels to an unforeseen level, however, the rising issue lays in the fact that the increase in economic growth is not parallel to job creation.

As a result of this decoupling of the parallel structure between productivity and jobs, most human laborers positioned near the bottom of the industrial hierarchy will seldom be the ones who benefit from this surge of technology; rather, the beneficiaries are going to be whoever “funds and owns” these technologies. As evidenced in the case of Google’s AlphaGo phenomenon, this new breed of technology has already invaded countless domains that have hitherto been considered “sacrosanct” to mankind—and is threatening to reduce humans to the status of nuts and bolts in a giant machine that is indifferent to the human touch. This process makes it ominous for workers as these adoption of rapid developing technologies, that takes place in manufacturing, retail works, and even in professions such as education and financing, are eliminating the need for workers or jobs, not to mention the significantly lower median income level that contrasts with the soaring gross domestic product. This revolution is very likely to yield greater income inequality—undermining the value of labor, which has been the solid foundation of human advancement. I question not the necessity of technology, but the ethical dilemma that occur from its rapid developments; whether we choose productivity or loss of jobs. It is in my belief that there are some values that must not change regardless of circumstances; the very qualities which define humanity: love, sympathy, forbearance, and ethics. However, with the continuation of income inequality and the undermining labor value, a common ground of “dos” and “don’ts” that suggests the possibilities of an ethical economy, start to disintegrate.

Proved by Hardin’s theory, the sharing of common resources will result in depletion and abusion of the resource due to one’s will to fulfill self-interest. As it is not an overstatement to say that people fear losses more than they hope to gain, it is only natural that there are more inequality and competition in order to satisfy one’s need despite the further limited resources. This eventually results in people taking advantage of natural resources that surrounds them without cost and create excess negative externalities such as water and air pollution. Despite how painful the inevitable changes can be, there are no historical patterns that precedes the net decrease of jobs over a long-term trend. As startling as the situation is, no historical precedents can be used to find a solution to the predicaments that we currently face. Workers from around the world are caught up in fear from the uncertainty: the meandering between the temporary disruption of jobs and the fictional scenario where robots and artificial intelligence completely replace humans. This is what leads me to earnestly believe that the role of economics is more important than ever to make this world livable again. This new world requires a new standard, a new concept of labor, and a new equilibrium between humanity and productivity to prevent further chaos and deterioration. Equipped with proper perspectives and values, people would be able to exploit the change as an opportunity to excel, rather than an abnormality to fear.

“Economics” is a word that once meant very little to me, and is now at the center of my endless curiosity. It is the thought of providing guidance and hope for many people that kindles my desire to explore the field of economics, because I believe it holds the key to the ability of individuals like me to make small but significant changes.Japan, the epitome of rapid technological development, had an earlier encounter with the problems that we currently face. Conceivably, this was not only due to its fundamentally different economic structure, but Japanese society’s ingrained belief in artisanship; the generations of meticulous work dedicated to a single business, a study, or even a single ramen recipe in a small Harukiya Ramen shop, which some might deem insignificant, to me are evidence of immeasurable effort in creating perfection. Despite its rapid technological developments that continue until today, the coexistence of both labor and physical capital in creating an apt and equal appropriation of income based on one’s work and effort become evident based on the progress of the japanese economy ever since its economic depression. Although my experience with Japan is very brief, I sincerely believe that Japan’s experience might hold a key to finding a new blend of labor in the upcoming era. I am fully convinced that the unfamiliar aspects of Japan should not prevent me, but rather enhance my motives to absorb its admirable qualities, especially the role of the country’s uniqueness in confronting the predicaments it has faced.And there is Keio University.

The studious environments of the six amazing different campuses positioned in different parts of Tokyo, the well-known infrastructure of post-graduation career options, and the superior language and cultural education offered to international students are, for me, only bits of the story. The most critical factor in my confidently choosing Keio University as my number one choice is its ability to expand the vision of its students, especially in regard to the most practical theories and applications of economic studies, handed down from the creator Fukuzawa Yukichi, the father of a cultural revolution. I am determined to fully immerse myself by venturing into the different fields of economic education in this hospitable environment.Henry David Thoreau judiciously said, centuries ago, “Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence.”

Just as the trend of the world has started to change, I have outgrown my longing for the familiarities of the past; rather, I now embrace forthcoming challenges. There are enough past laws and economic theories that only reiterate the mere existence of changes, but we are left with no fundamental solutions to the current predicament. While my ambition to discover is strong, I am educated only with the most rudimentary concepts of economics. Therefore, I believe that it will be pivotal for me to specialize in the fields of economics and seek mentors in Keio University to expand my knowledge and construct my future as an economist.

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My Desire to Get Economical Education in Keio University. (2018, December 03). GradesFixer. Retrieved July 25, 2021, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/economical-education-in-keio-university/
“My Desire to Get Economical Education in Keio University.” GradesFixer, 03 Dec. 2018, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/economical-education-in-keio-university/
My Desire to Get Economical Education in Keio University. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/economical-education-in-keio-university/> [Accessed 25 Jul. 2021].
My Desire to Get Economical Education in Keio University [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2018 Dec 03 [cited 2021 Jul 25]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/economical-education-in-keio-university/
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