Economics & International Relations Personal Statement
Growing up in a deteriorating global economic climate I have come to appreciate the extent to which economics influences the relationships between nations, and the importance of competent macroeconomic management.
I find myself drawn to the impact of a country's economic and foreign policies on its residents; two factors which are undoubtedly symbiotic. My Burmese heritage has given me the opportunity to visit Myanmar on multiple occasions, a country that has been plagued with corruption in recent decades.
Witnessing the condition of this failing state has led me to believe that bad governance and corruption are significant reasons for stalled economic growth, as too often governments in weak states such as Myanmar, refuse international aid in order to retain power rather than using it for economic development where the latter would be most effective.
By studying A-Level Economics I have gained an array of transferable skills such as diagrammatical analysis as well as the ability to come to logical conclusions after extracting relevant information from different case studies. Analysing the labour market has led me to draw conclusions about wage differentials, which can be caused by discrimination despite anti-discriminatory legislation being in place.
Studying History alongside Economics has led me to realise that they are heavily intertwined.
Working on an historical enquiry into the causes of warfare in Europe has been particularly exciting to study, and I am coming to the conclusion that for most countries, the underlying cause of war is usually protecting or furthering their individual economic interests; an example being Britain, who joined the Crimean War to protect their trade links with Turkey and maintain access to India.
In addition, participating in numerous discussions during English Literature has significantly developed my ability to understand abstract concepts and then articulate my knowledge concisely. Studying Maths A-Level has taught me to apply complex theories to a range of problems by looking at situations from different perspectives, helping to improve my problem solving skills.
In the final year of secondary school, I undertook the OCR Higher Project which consisted of rigorous research and planning over a six month period in order to produce an essay relating my findings.
I named my project 'The Impact Of 9 11 On British Muslims' and focussed greatly on the economic consequences, such as the impact on employment numbers amongst Muslim men within different age groups. Surprisingly, I found that employment amongst older Muslim men had fallen, rather than younger ones, which is what I had initially expected to find and may have been the consequence of sensationalised media.
This project developed my research and thinking skills as it required me to come to a final judgement on the impact of 9 11 in Britain, whilst also considering the effects on international relations, particularly between the West and the Middle East.
As an active member of my community, I volunteer weekly at the British Heart Foundation in their retail division, which has allowed me to apply my sociable nature and meet a variety of new people.
I am also a devoted reader and especially enjoy classic literature and dystopian fiction, my favourites being Persuasion by Jane Austen and The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood.
Recently, I have put my hobby of baking to good use by selling cupcakes in college to raise money for various organisations. Reading 'The Bottom Billion' by Paul Collier has strongly influenced my desire to pursue a career which will allow me to be involved in the development of struggling economies such as Myanmar, and I feel that studying this degree will put me in a strong position to do so.
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