Statement by MIPT Alumnus (01/2002)
The Economics Student
In this essay I am going to concentrate
mostly on the incentives that stimulate me to pursue further studying,
and reflect the motives for my choice of Princeton University as well as
state my future career objectives.
I have chosen to work in the area of international microeconomics because it has such a demand for new ideas. At the same time it requires a good mathematical background and has obvious implications in real life.
My education suits this field very well, I have Master of Science with Honors in the field of applied mathematics and physics and a Master of Arts in economics with a specialization in international economics. I already have extensive research experience both in applied sciences and economics, know basic economic models and have strong background both in abstract modeling and data manipulation. All this probably makes me an economist, but my objective is to become a good one.
I have been taught by very good lecturers. After course I took with Professor Branson I decided that there is nothing more interesting than international economics. Professor A made issues of monetary economics and government policy fascinating. Lectures delivered by Professor B attracted me to labor market problems. I enjoyed listening to them and want to teach my mind to operate in a similar manner -- attention is paid to every individual fact and each formal problem solved reflects a real economic situation.
While writing my master's thesis I had a chance to see that a simple look at a graph can be more useful than application of sophisticated economic techniques. One of the reasons I want to study further is to reach at least the same level of intuitiveness and panoramic view of the subject as my teachers have.
My Master of Arts degree was in the field of Health Economics, which I am very interested in. It was mostly empirical dissertation. My dissertation was titled ".." and I worked under the guidance of Professor C. The greatest part of my work was devoted to macroeconomic cross-country econometric (panel data) analysis. The task was complicated by the necessity to work with omitted variables and low quality data as well as the low reliability of data for developing countries and countries in transition.
We also made efforts to build a model that explains the impact of macroeconomic parameters on health deterioration and the probability of death. My master's thesis has been presented at the "Russian Economic And Political Institutions In Transition" conference and currently we are preparing it for publication.
At this time I am also doing empirical research devoted to inflation and monetary policy. I feel cautious specifying which area of economics interests me most for further study, but I do not think that this is a drawback. I find economics particularly attractive for the fact that it is broad, and has not yet been split into a set of narrow sub-branches -- economists all speak almost the same language. I also think that in the face of complexity we face in this discipline, it would ineffective to specialize too narrowly.
This year I realized as I had not before that I wish to continue my studies. Being a teaching assistant in Professor A's Macroeconomics and Advanced Macroeconomics classes, I understood a lot of effort must be applied for a good student to turn into a good teacher. I feel that a similar gap lies between a good student and a good researcher.
I am a hard-working and determined person, and I am ready for a new leap in my economics career. I will work hard in hope that the quantity of the effort I put in will result in high quality knowledge. The fact is that the best possible supervisors and a highly competitive atmosphere are necessary for this quality. The only reasonable decision for me was to aim for such a place. All this gives me the motivation to apply to Princeton University.
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