Mathematics Personal Statement

Mathematics for me is something of a family affair.  My father has a degree in Mathematics and Electronic Engineering, my mother a degree in Statistics, and my brother is currently studying for a Mathematics degree.  The subject has surrounded me from an early age and all my thinking about a university course and career has been in terms of Mathematics.  I have enjoyed the subject and succeeded in it from early in my school career, competing against other schools in the UKMT Mathematics challenge. What I find so exciting is the way that Mathematics can offer such satisfying and elegant ways to overcome difficult problems. My A-level Further Mathematics has been largely self-taught and has helped me to realise my own potential. All aspects of the subject are of interest to me, but I particularly enjoy the core aspects of the course which form the foundation for the whole subject, such as proof, which involves economic and abstract thinking methods.  I would also love the chance to research further into Algebra, a branch of Mathematics that is particularly fascinating. Most attractive is the thought of being able to study in a competitive atmosphere which encourages individuals to seek solutions that will prepare them for the future. Reading about the subject has opened up new areas of mathematics for me.  Particularly intriguing was reading about Marcus Du Sautoy and his work on the fundamental concepts of science.  What he said about symmetry has made me change my perception of mathematics and encouraged me to broaden my understanding. Another mathematician I have taken an interest in is David Hilbert; his outlining of the twenty-three major Mathematical problems was revelatory, showing me that the great unsolved problems are what bring mathematics to life.

Alongside my academic achievements in the subject, obtaining top grades in mathematics since year 6, I have helped others in my mathematics A-level class and aided teachers in tutoring lower years. I have represented my school several times in the UKMT Mathematics challenge, achieving silver awards and have attended Mathematics master-classes at the University of Cambridge, which have demonstrated to me the central role of Mathematics in many other disciplines, such as physics and economics.  Pure Mathematics has a great intellectual appeal for me, but one possible career option I am considering is to work in mathematical finance.  I know that skills such as numeracy and problem solving are highly valued by employers.

Outside my mathematical interests my life is very full.  I am an experienced traveller, having visited Europe, including France and Croatia, as well as Canada, Turkey and Lebanon, and I have lived in Iraq, Jordan, USA, and now the United Kingdom.  I am bi-lingual, having fluent English and Arabic – something very important to me as it is part of my identity, and also enhances my chances of working abroad. I undertook work experience at a national bank as a cashier and customer services assistant, acquiring many interpersonal skills, alongside the ability to be adaptable, especially in a dynamic working environment. Holding the position of Prefect has given me the opportunity to represent the school on a number of open evenings for potential students and their families, as well as acting as a role model for younger students. I enjoy table tennis and have represented the school in tournaments, competing with schools from all over the UK. I have played in tennis tournaments with the Lawn Tennis Association and in numerous tennis charity events. Such sports have helped me to keep a balance between academic and extra-curricular life.