Series: Different ways to start your career. Part 2

With this series we want to show you different opportunities to start your career. People from all over Namibia will tell us their story, will talk about difficulties but also the chances they have after graduating.

Do you want to tell your story to fellow Namibians? Send us an e-mail and we will send you the form.

Name Christof M Kalumbu
Place of apprenticeship University of Madras, India
Subject Master of Art in Econometrics. Subjects in the first semester are: Statistics and Mathematics for Economics, Risk and Insurance Management, Microeconomics, Econometrics and Computer Applications, Environmental Economics
How did you get notice from your institution? I was notified by the Indian Embassy in Namibia. They usually advertise the scholarships in the local newspapers and the embassy’s website. They usually come out December/January every year.
What are the requirements to study there? Degree in Economics, Statistics or Mathematics.
Did you get any kind of financial assistance? I got a fully funded scholarship from the Indian Council for Cultural Relation.
What is your subject about? Econometrics is a social science in which the tools of economic theory, mathematical and statistical inference are applied to the analysis of economic phenomena. We forecast, analyze economic, financial and business performance using statistical, mathematical equations and economic theory.
Why did you choose this subject? When I did my Undergraduate, we had econometrics as a subject. I used to enjoy the lessons though I was not really good in it. After doing my research I realised that it is an interesting subject and one can study it at masters’ level. I decided to further my studies in M.A Econometrics. I am always seeking for something new and eager to analyse what I see around me. Econometricians play a big role in the developed world especially in planning, economic projection, forecasting, research and investments. I believe after finishing this course, I will be fully equipped ready to give good financial advices on different investment opportunities to individuals, cooperates or government in Namibia or anywhere in the world. There is a growing demand for financial advisors and financial analyzers around the world since the global financial crisis 2008.
How are the job chances after finishing the formation? The Namibian economy is very small, young and still developing but the market can sustain the number of professionals entering and one may opt for international labour market not just domestic. You can work as an economist, financial advisor/analyst, researcher, econometrician, lecturer, consultant, statistician or actuarial in big organizations such as the World Bank or International Monetary Fund just to mention a few. And if you are willing to work extra hours, you can have two jobs a day. For instance, you can work as an econometrician/statistician or researcher at Bank of Namibia or National Planning Commission and as consultant/lecture after hours, it depends on the individual.
What do you like most of your studies? I enjoy almost everything, every day I have an opportunity to learn something new, there is no one dull moment. Some parts I enjoy the most as forecasting business optimization. Finding the relationship between different variables and their correlation. Choosing the best tool among two competing models, proving the theorems such as for chi-square, F-Distribution, student distribution, Moments or Eigen Values can be challenging but fun at times. I really find it fascinating knowing the future financial status of an economy, company or of an individual just to say a few. I will be doing advanced econometrics in my second year 2014/15 and I am expecting it to more interesting.
Are there any sacrifices you have to make? Yes, classes are from Monday to Saturday and I have to attend 90% of my classes.  One has to sleep late to complete his/her school work and has to be up early for classes the next day. There is no semester break.
Which abilities are needed to go the same way you went? You need mathematical, statistical and economic skills, speed, ability to think critically and good listening skills. The learning environment is a bit challenging compared to that in Namibia.
Has there been any situation when you thought “I want to drop off university” and how did you handle this situation? Being so determinant and eager to go extra mile to finish and to deliver on whatever I take on, giving up or dropping out is not something to opt for.
I was finding it hard to adapt and it really affected my performance but I’m over that period now. I have approached my professors and class mates for help. They were very helpful to me.
What do your relatives think about your studies? My family is very supportive in every little way they can.

Christof

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