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Economics Senior Spotlight - Andrew Bostick, HC '12

Even in middle school, fencing played a big part in Andrew Bostick’s ’12 life.  When the time came to look at colleges Andrew pursued strong academics complemented by a prominent fencing team. Haverford offered these attributes with the added bonus of the Honor Code. Doing an overnight visit with a fencing team member made him feel at ease and welcomed. He knew right away that Haverford was the right fit.

Getting more serious about fencing in high school, Andrew enrolled in private fencing lessons outside of school where he participated in the National Circuit and won two state championships with his high school team. As a prominent member of Haverford’s fencing team, with his role as Senior Captain, these last four years have earned him gold medals and the last three MACFA championships. Although it is an individual sport, team dynamics are paramount. The sport has also engrained strong mental resiliency cultivating an intensity enveloped by calmness.

In the classroom, his original plan was to major in English. However, after taking Empirical Macroeconomics with Professor Banerjee, he was fascinated by the course’s presentation of real-world applications of economics in everyday life and decided to declare a second major in Economics. This is clearly evident in his thesis topic.

Titled “Credible Credit Raters?”, his thesis studies the relationships that exist between credit rating actions and asset returns in the American fixed income market between 2005 and 2011. The study attempts to ascertain whether or not the recent Financial Crisis altered these relationships. Though his initial hypothesis was that the scathing criticism the rating agencies underwent by the press and national government would lead to a dampening of the effects of ratings actions, his thesis finds that downgrades actually have a much more significant impact following the Crisis.

Andrew is also majoring in English. His English Literature thesis, titled “The Overwhelming Question: Poetic Failure Refigured as Catalytic Reading in ‘The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock’”, explores the question of poetic meaning in T. S. Eliot’s famous poem.” Looking specifically at the function of temporality, intertextuality, and the role of the reader, his project provides an innovative re-reading of the poem that interprets the speaker’s monologue as a generative moment of poetic inspiration.

Outside the classroom, The Center for Peace and Global Citizenship supported Andrew in two consecutive summer internships. As a rising sophomore Andrew spent his summer organic farming in France where he learned about ecologically sound methods of sustainable gardening.  He immersed himself in Southern France for eight weeks farming in a variety of locations.

The following summer, he applied what he had previously learned about organic farming by proposing and initiating The Haverford Garden Initiative. The organization is operated by students and is geared toward ecologically sound farming. Through this initiative, Andrew came to understand the complexities and challenges of building a program—a program that will continue in his absence. It meant securing external and internal financial commitments as well as amassing enough committed underclassmen to secure the fate of the cooperative.

As a rising senior he was granted a Whitehead Internship in which he spent the summer working with the fixed income desk of Aberdeen Asset Management, a Scottish investment management company. He learned about the bond market and built credit models for companies. This internship has guaranteed him a post-graduation job in their two year training program.  He will join their rotational Graduate Development Program, yielding him the opportunity to work in Philadelphia, London, and Edinburgh.

Once he has completed his two year commitment with Aberdeen, he is contemplating a few career paths, such as earning an MBA, or a JD, or perhaps continuing in the investment industry as a stock or bond analyst.

To add to Andrew’s impressive diversity in activities, his interests also include intramural basketball, being a member of FABs (Fords Against Boredom), and he works in the Student Activities office assisting Jason McGraw with event planning.

Founders Green on a warm spring day.

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