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Business and Economics Personal Statement

Sample Business and Economics Personal Statement

I used to think that business and economics were roughly the same thing. However, the fallout from the financial crisis that began in 2007 made me realise that the notion of the ‘business world’ was simply the exterior of a much more complex and fascinating system. Immediately taking an interest in the real-world consequences of the crisis such as big-name bankruptcies, I set my mind on understanding the root causes of the unfolding chaos. Studying A Level Economics helped to give me an initial overview of key macroeconomic concepts such as the money supply and interest rates, but I never allowed myself to be confined to the syllabus. Through studying Economics at school and reading books such as Gary Becker’s’An Economic Approach to Human Behaviour’ in my own time my fascination with the economic crisis was soon accompanied by an amazement at the subject’s great ability to analyse, explain and forecast human behaviour that otherwise seems irrational and arbitrary.

It is possibly this particularly strong interest in the human side of economics that led me to make a crucial, life-changing decision around a year ago. Having completed the first year of a joint-honours degree in Mathematics and Economics at the University of Nottingham, I found that my feelings about mathematics did not match my enthusiasm for all aspects of economics. Although the aspects of mathematics that inform economics were highly compelling to me–the clarity of game theory is one of the areas of economics that never fails to fascinate me, for example– I found the abstractions of pure mathematics to simply be a distraction from focusing on what I loved most: understanding human behaviour through economics. Part way through my second year I therefore decided to leave the course so that I could start anew, this time focusing only on economics. One lesson I have learnt from economics is that we as human beings have to make decisions based on the available information rather than hindsight. I therefore do not regret having initially chosen this subject pairing, but rather see it as an experience that has made me more clearly aware of my desire to concentrate on economics alone.

My interest in microeconomics has come to the fore in more recent years, to a large extent through seeing its principles in action through completing work experience. Last year I participated in the Ernst & Young Summer Internship Scheme, where I worked in auditing. In completing the internship I gained a better comprehension of areas such as the pricing strategies of businesses and the effects these have on their balance sheet. More broadly, it was also very insightful to get a better grasp of business and accounting procedures. The highlights of the placement were being involved in meetings at which financial directors were present, through which I achieved a better understanding of how they make business decisions. Being in charge of a six-week-long group project that culminated in a presentation on the company’s audit services was also a great challenge. My appreciation of the principles of supply and demand were reinforced through a part-time job I held at a lettings agent, through which I saw first-hand these forces at work in the residential rental market. I also enjoyed the day-to-day management duties of this role.

One of the most remarkable experiences in my life was my time spent volunteering as an English teacher at a Buddhist Seminary in 2010, which I was proud to have arranged independently of any placement organisations. The challenge of thinking of exciting ways to teach English to children who had had few previous classes really pushed me to be resourceful and think on my feet. I hope to complete similar projects during future university vacations. Having also taken to being involved with student societies with gusto at my previous university, ranging from ice hockey teams to the Investment Society, I am really looking forward to diving back into university life next year.

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