Why Carnegie Mellon?

Please submit a one page, single-spaced essay that explains why you have chosen Carnegie Mellon and your particular major(s), department(s) or program(s). This essay should include the reasons why you’ve chosen the major(s), any goals or relevant work plans and any other information you would like us to know.

Before I had even entered kindergarten, I would sit on the floor of my father’s study room every Saturday morning, both of us bent over a large artist’s sketch pad that was covered in numbers and equations instead of paint or charcoal. From a young age, I enjoyed the logical and systematic style of thinking that he knew so well: it was alluring, powerful, almost mythic to my young mind. But as I matured beyond the intrigue of mathematical theory, I became particularly fascinated with how I could apply my mathematical knowledge to real-world problems, and developed a strong interest in Economics after taking an introductory Economics course during my junior year. Besides learning about how the stock market functions and how to manage my personal finance, I was alerted to the momentous economic issues that plague our nation as a whole, such as the sky-high national debt and severe market crashes like the one in 2008. Our current financial system is flawed, to put it simply; I believe that we should have a system that alleviates the nation’s financial struggles rather than exacerbating them, and I want to develop such a system.

To get started, I undoubtedly need a solid background in Economics because the basis of creating a financial system is all about fiscal management and better allocation of resources. I also believe that having an extensive knowledge in mathematics will definitely benefit me in my pursuit of this goal; by continuing my mathematical education, I will be able to use more sophisticated analytical and quantitative methods to develop my economic model. I was instantly drawn to Carnegie Mellon because it offers a B.S. degree in Economics and Mathematical Sciences, which I intend to apply for during my sophomore year. This program is one of the few in the country that is geared specifically towards students like myself who want to combine the two areas and take courses that complement each other. Integrating courses such as Intermediate Macroeconomics with courses like Principles of Real Analysis will undoubtedly provide a solid foundation for me to pursue my goal.

Since the B.S. degree is offered jointly by the Undergraduate Economics Program and the Department of Mathematical Sciences, I am applying to both the Dietrich College for Humanities and Social Sciences and the Mellon College of Science to major in Economics or Mathematical Sciences respectively. In addition to being able to study exactly what I want, I am also looking forward to taking courses from world-class faculty members such as University Professors Gérard Cornuéjols (Tepper School of Business) and Irene Fonseca (Department of Mathematical Sciences). Their research and insight regarding economics and mathematics serves as an inspiration for me to design my own economic model. With a rigorous education in both Economics and Mathematics and an esteemed faculty to help me along the way, Carnegie Mellon provides the ideal curriculum and surroundings. I’m no longer sitting on the floor of my father’s study or in an introductory Economics course, but I am ready to take the same wonder I felt then somewhere new.

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