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Within the last 30 years, the world has undergone immense changes, from the fall of communism to the interlinking of countries through globalization. However, despite this, we still live in a world with remarkable deprivation, from the widespread prevalence of poverty and inequality to the fear for the sustainability of our resources. Living in the UK, but frequently visiting Russia, my experience of these two economies epitomizes some of these changes. Russia is a poignant example of extreme poverty and unimaginable affluence existing side by side. A chief concern in the UK is sustaining its economic and international prominence after Brexit. All these aspects developed my interest in Economics.
Through studying Economics I have learned how economic theories shape society and affect how choices are made by consumers, producers, and governments. In particular, I have enjoyed studying the ways in which the government intervenes in markets to promote competition and prevent the abuse of monopoly power. Through reading “The Undercover Economist” by Tim Harford and David Smith’s “Free Lunch”, I was interested to learn about the concept of scarcity power and how this allows producers to set higher prices for their goods. Paul Krugman’s “The Return of Depression Economics and the Crisis of 2008” provided me with a deeper understanding of the similarities and differences between the 2008 Global Recession and previous downturns, such as the Great Depression of the 1930s. A major difference was the use of contractionary policy during the Great Depression and expansionary policy during the 2008 financial crisis. However, a period of sustainability leading to high leverage and a financial crisis were common in both. I participated in the Student Investor Challenge which involved investing in virtual money on the London Stock Exchange. I was required to judge when to buy and sell shares in order to make a profit by following the ups and downs of the market. This was a great opportunity to see how trading in shares works and to build my teamwork skills. I also took part in the IACEW Base Competition which involved analyzing a complex business case and responding to various situational changes. I was in charge of analyzing the firm’s costs, which allowed me to apply my knowledge of Maths in a real-life situation.
My academic studies have equipped me with various skills that I believe will be useful for studying Economics. In Mathematics and Statistics, I enjoy studying the concept of hypothesis testing. Participating in the UKMT Maths Challenge developed my problem-solving skills, as I enjoyed finding solutions to types of problems that I had not studied in class. Furthermore, being a Maths mentor within my school required me to help younger pupils with homework and revision, by breaking down concepts into simple components, such as trigonometry. Studying English Literature has helped me develop my essay writing and has enabled me to form a well structured and convincing argument. I enjoyed exploring the ways in which the idea of the anti-hero is presented in Anthony Burgess’s ‘A Clockwork Orange’ and DBC Pierre’s ‘Vernon God Little’. Moreover, taking Russian independently have developed my vocabulary and has challenged me to write analytical essays on ‘The Queen of Spades’ by Alexander Pushkin in Russian. I feel that my ability to speak Russian will be of great benefit in my future careers.
During my work experience at Adam’s Street Partners, I shadowed a fund manager. I updated databases of funds and prepared reports by managing and analyzing information. My work experience with Direct Insurance London provided me with the opportunity to visit the Lloyds insurance market. I also prepared reports in Russian for clients.
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