Sebastian Gomez Cardona
Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree?
Since my undergrad, I have been curious to learn more and understand economic phenomena better. A graduate degree allowed me to pursue this passion and opened a wide range of career paths.
Why did you decide to study at UBC?
I wanted to come to Canada for its culture and openness towards immigrants. UBC offers the best program in economics in the country and has a reputation worldwide for its research and top programs, not only in economics but also in many other disciplines.
What is it specifically, that your program offers, that attracted you?
The faculty and the topics they research. At the Vancouver School of Economics, I have the possibility to work with some of the best researchers in economics. I also knew before coming that the relationship between students and faculty was excellent. Having a good working environment was also a deciding factor that drew me to VSE.
What was the best surprise about UBC or life in Vancouver?
After four years, I am still amazed by the nature around the campus and the city. People in Vancouver are friendly, kind and always willing to help. But most of all, my classmates, for their human qualities and their research, which has enhanced mine.
What aspects of your life or career before now have best prepared you for your UBC graduate program?
My undergrad in applied mathematics and my masters in economics gave me the theoretical tools to better understand economic models and develop my research. My working experience in the private sector in Colombia helped me better understand the type of economic problems that households face in developing countries and the challenges they have to face in their lives.
What do you like to do for fun or relaxation?
Reading, running, talking to my family back in Colombia, and enjoying the city with my wife.
What advice do you have for new graduate students?
To enjoy every aspect of their program, but always remember that it is part of their life, not their entire life. Graduate degrees can be very demanding, and we should not disregard other aspects of life.