James Maine

James Maine

James Maine

I had originally planned on studying engineering due to my affinity with maths. But an inspirational teacher in Year 12 developed my love for economics.

This made me want to study the economy and all the facets of it. The combination of these two naturally led to a double degree in commerce and economics with majors in econometrics econometrics, where I can combine my passion for economics and maths.

After leaving high school I came into university with a pretty strong Idea that I wanted to study economics and finance. I didn't even know what econometrics was until I took a first semester unit. When I started learning about econometrics I fell in love with it and something just clicked. I knew I had found the right area of study for me to pursue.

Econometrics relates strongly to data. 'Big data' is massive datasets which stem from the internet revolution of the past 25 years. Data stored on the internet has given us the ability to gain insight into how people act and gives us the samples to prove relationships between variables. Big data will be used in a wider range of applications in the future as more people are trained to use it correctly and it proves itself in the areas it is currently being used.

Essentially I see econometrics as the intersection between the worlds of quantitative and qualitative data. I enjoy being able to look at economic and business problems from a quantitative perspective. Statistical evidence has the ability to strengthen what we know and to solve problems. I also enjoy how it can be used in an exploratory manner. In econometrics you explore the data by sifting through the numbers to find relationships which can be explained in a qualitative manner

In semester one 2012, I went on a study exchange to Copenhagen Business School, Denmark. It was hands down the best experience of my life. It gave me the opportunity to make friends all over the world and interact and integrate with a different culture. During my six month trip I was able to have some of the most memorable experiences of my life.

The world is a rapidly globalising place and firms are aware of this. I feel that my exchange experience shows potential employers that I have willingness to deal with different cultures and shows an acknowledgement of the globalised world.

I am hoping to be lead to a career in data science. The world is filled with so much more data than it used to be and I am hoping my econometrics will give me the technical skills to analyse the data. I also hope my finance and economic training will give me the means to properly interpret my results and link them to the wider world.

My advice to future students would be to make the most of your university experience. It's a waste of a great opportunity to not take up the great experiences offered at Monash: Go on exchange or join a club or society of your interest.