Ashik Khulal – May 2019
Texas A&M Department of Economics Amazing Student
Hometown: Biratnagar, Morang, Nepal
High School: Xavier International College
Degree objective: Bachelor of Science in Economics
Expected graduation: December 2019
University highlights, awards, scholarships: At my previous community college, I was the First Vice President at Phi Theta Kappa. Through the college and honors projects we did, we were awarded as the most distinguished chapter of 2018 among over 1300 chapters. We became the best chapter in the whole world. Getting to the stage and accepting the award with my fellow officers in front of over 4,000 people that were there is one of the fondest memories I have had. Another challenge for me during my college-life is to graduate with a 4.0. So far, I have been successful at it. I don’t just want to be the first generation college graduate in my family, I want to be a first generation college graduate with a 4.0 GPA.
Clubs/Organizations I am (was) a part of: Currently, I am the Treasurer at Nepalese Student Association (NSA). The NSA at Texas A&M strives to bring together individuals who share common interests in various aspects of Nepalese life and culture. I am also a member at International Student Association and International Mentor Student Association at A&M. In past, I was actively involved with Phi Theta Kappa.
Current employment: My employments has been mostly in the motels. It is because during downtime I get to study and do my college work. This has absolutely been a key to balancing college and work. Right now, I work full-time at Days Inn and I love the people and owners there. They are supportive of the fact that I am a student. I have also always tried to put their business first so it is a both-way relationship.
Family ties to Texas A&M: I do not have any family ties to Texas A&M University. In fact, when I graduate, I will be the first generation college graduate in my family.
I chose to attend Texas A&M because… Of the rich and unique student culture it has. My admission application was also accepted to UT Austin, however, A&M was always my first choice. I had heard so much great things about A&M, and about its culture so I wanted to have a great college experience it offers.
My favorite things to do on campus are… Midnight yell, hanging around the third floor Econ computer lab, hanging around MSC.
When I have free time, I like… Hang out with my friends, read books, watch movies, play FIFA. I also love learning about trading and investing during my free time.
The craziest thing I’ve done is… Skydiving.
My favorite place to study is… At third floor ECON computer lab. It is quiet and most of my classmates also study there so a lot of times we group study.
My favorite memory of studying abroad… All the experiences I have accumulated here in the US have been amazing so far. Like, my first time snow experience, living in a university dorm, travelling great cities, making new friends, going to concerts, skydiving, etc.
My favorite ECON professor is… I think all the professors here are great. Coming from a different student-teacher culture, here the professors are friendlier. All the professors I met have demonstrated me that they want to help me more to excel further. I think such environment demonstrates more active participation among students and teachers. IfI have to name my favorite ECON professor, it would be Professor Adel Varghese. I am amazed by how much he genuinely cares about the students’ learning.
My favorite part of being an Economics student is… Learning about how the world works. Economics fascinates me because I can directly relate the knowledge I learn to the real world. The Economics courses that I take at A&M are so interesting and honestly, seeing how I could use that knowledge to make the world better motivates me. For instance, this spring I took Microfinance class – which has been hailed as one of the potential solutions for reducing world poverty.
If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with… Warren Buffett. I love his way of investing. Through him, I learned not just about how to value a company, I also learned how to live a good and happy life. He is a very humorous and giving person. I think those are very important characters to have to lead a joyful life. I would like a chance to say thank you to him.
If I knew I could not fail, I would… Not change anything. For me, my parents are a great role model. Especially my mom, I think she is a very courageous person and I like to think some of her qualities has also rubbed off on me. So, I do not have any regrets for not trying anything. I am happy at where I am in my life and the future path it holds.
If money was not a consideration, I would love to… Travel more. I also think money provides freedom. Travelling is one of the things that I want to do more often.
What is your passion and how are you committed to pursuing it? My passion has been focus value-investing. The major part of focused value-investing is reading and research and I love reading and learning new things. I think this is a perfect practice for me. Right now, work and school does not leave me with a lot of free time, but I try to read books frequently and I also like to learn more about investing and trading during my downtime.
After graduation, I plan to… Get a job. I want to continue investing as my side hustle and grow from there. I am also planning of retiring early from my job (maybe around 35-40) and just focus on investing with the enough resources I will accumulate by then.
The one Texas A&M experience I will always remember is… My first midnight yell practice. I think one should go to at least one of the midnight yells, it is one of the best things to do around the campus.