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Mathematics and Economics

Applied in: Winter 2013

University Offers: Edinburgh, Lse, Ucl, Warwick

I have been educated in South Korea, Singapore and the UK and also had opportunities to spend time in Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines along with many other countries around the globe. As well as familiarity with different cultures and languages, this has granted me a chance to participate in many distinctive economies. Through these experiences, I have developed a keen interest in issues surrounding the question of why some economies thrive and others struggle.

Studying economics has given me the tools to be able to begin grappling with these questions. On these issues, I have particularly enjoyed reading The Truth About Markets by John Kay and Poor Economics by Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo, as well as The Economist. I find nuanced approaches to financial markets and microcredit fascinating and am eager to extend my understanding of these concepts at university. This past summer I attended a two-week finance lecture course at the University of Korea, which concluded in leading a small group presentation on The Future of Global Economies and receiving the top award from a selection of forty other groups. I was also selected by The Korean Times to represent the UK in the Model G-20 Summit, Seoul, where my group presented the case that modern technologies are a crucial aid to economic growth. In 2012, I was commissioned as a junior press reporter by The Korean Times to explore the economic advantages and disadvantages of a Korean reunification. 

I am strongly mathematically inclined, as evidenced by my near-perfect scores across my core mathematics modules. By tutoring younger students through my college mentoring scheme, I have been able help others gain confidence and further develop my own understanding of the subject. As student representative, I am actively involved in college life, including regular debating competitions. Outside of class, I have had opportunities to explore how mathematics relates to financial markets:  I learned how to use the dividend discount model to value a variety of technology stocks as part of a summer internship at the Korea Exchange Bank. As well as gaining experience on the trading floor, in 2010 I ranked amongst the top of my peers in the Student Investors Challenge and have been an avid stock trader since then. My recent experience in the dealing room was my first glimpse at professional trading and thoroughly enjoyed gleaning from their fast-paced assessments and dexterity when under pressure.

Recently I successfully completed the Duke of Edinburgh’s Silver Award in Korea, which involved competing in a nationwide Tae Kwon Do competition leading me to obtain my black belt, and I am now pursuing my Gold Award in the UK. My other sporting interests include fencing, cycling, basketball, tennis, and open water scuba diving. I also enjoy music as a past time, playing cello and first violin in a youth orchestra. In addition, I have written 14 historical reports to help increase awareness of our heritage. I was awarded a letter of recognition from the president of the cultural heritage administration praising my work for the Parameter Foundation, a leading caretaker of Korean cultural sites. My other voluntary activities have included co-leading a local community fair, teaching mathematics in the school for orphans near Delhi, India, and helped raise a GBP 1000 for runaway children sheltered by the Blue Dragon Charity in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. 

I have always been excited at the prospect of studying at a leading UK university: I hope that through this my grasp of economics and mathematics will develop extensively and will open up interesting possibilities for specialised postgraduate study or work at a UK investment bank. I also look forward to exploring challenging new ideas, contributing to a vibrant university life, and being shaped into a more global citizen.

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