It was when I earned my first pound at the age of ten washing my mother’s car that I became interested in the power of money. Over time it became clear to me that the people who understand the monetary and banking system are capable of understanding the decisions made by governments and the future of society. I want to be one of those people.
To broaden my knowledge of different areas of finance, I have read a number of different books on the subject – from “How the City of London Works” to “Rich Dad Poor Dad”. I am also a regular reader of the Economist magazine. I believe that reading such books and magazines has given me insight into topics not covered at school, for example how Japanese management in Chinese factories caused unrest among the workforce due to the Chinese workers’ dislike of the Japanese management style, and how this affected the share price of companies such as Honda. Reading about such things has made me realise how the subject of Finance and the economy affects everybody’s lives, and has strengthened my desire to further study the subject. The A-level subjects I am studying give me a firm foundation for studying Finance at University. Business Studies at A-level has greatly improved my analytical and writing skills. I have particularly enjoyed the part of the course which concerns how a firm selects financial strategies and how managers choose which aspect of a firm needs the most investment. German has improved my communication skills and self-confidence and has also made me more appreciative and open to other cultures. Alongside the logical method of thinking that I have developed from Mathematics at A-level, I believe that I am well prepared to take on a degree course in Finance at University.
My part-time job as a receptionist at a sports and leisure club has given me some insight into the demands of working life. Having worked there since May, I now feel I am an able employee and because of the nature of the job. I have learned how to communicate with colleagues, my employer and of course, customers. I often have to work alone so I have learned to use my own initiative and how to be independent – skills which are of paramount importance if I want to work in the financial industry.
Since the age of eleven, a hobby and a major interest of mine is Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. This year I won the Welsh Open under 18 absolute division and in 2010 I won a silver medal in the under 18 lightweight division in the European Championships. My previous successes include being the team captain for the Indonesian National Children’s team, where we won the Pan Asian team Championships, beating The Philippines in the final. Balancing my academic life with the rigours of playing a sport at such a level has been very challenging at times. The weeks and months leading up to a major competition are usually pretty stressful, but, as I have now been through the experience many times, I have learned how to deal with immense pressure – and how to enjoy the success which comes afterwards! In addition to this, I have learned about commitment and dedication as well as honour and how to handle a major loss, and also how to remain humble in victory. The things I have learned from Jiu-Jitsu will help me throughout my life; not only during University, but during my career and long afterwards.
I am taking a gap year so I can earn some money in order to travel and to pay for some of the costs of University. I intend to keep my job as a receptionist and also to take on some teaching at the sports and leisure club and, when I have enough money, I am planning to travel around Europe and South America. I believe this experience will be worthwhile as I will come to University with greater maturity after experiencing other cultures.
A possible career option is to do something involved in banking or investments – I certainly hope I will never have to wash another car again!