“February half term saw the first ever Economics Trip to the Big Apple. Our snapshot of New York City life filled us with memories to last a lifetime, on what will be our final school trip at Blue Coat.
On day one we visited the Empire State Building. We visited at sunset thus the panoramic views of New York were even more spectacular than usual. On Tuesday, we visited Ground Zero and the Financial District briefly, before heading to Liberty Island. Whilst on the ferry, we got to see the statue up close, as well as the Ellis Island immigration museum (if only from the outside). Afterwards we enjoyed some free time which included some retail therapy in and around Times Square.
Wednesday was a real treat. We all enjoyed a four hour walking tour of the Financial District. We began the journey near to the Federal Reserve and walked all around the district. We even saw a trade union march- a real life example that put into a global context the issues that we study with regards to the labour market. We walked around the old areas of the FiDi, learning all about its history as New Amsterdam and how the economy of the area developed from a port to the ‘Financial Capital of the World’. We strolled along the cobbles of Wall Street (which is surprisingly small despite its esteem), seeing not only the New York stock exchange but also the Federal Hall, where George Washington was inaugurated as the first President of the USA. We even managed to see the statues of the Bull and the Little Girl, which to me symbolise the woman’s courage in the man’s world that is finance, a source of inspiration especially for those who would like to work in this sector. We once again visited Ground Zero, and reflected on the events of 9/11. We entered the headquarters of American Express and saw a touching memorial to those who lost their lives on 9/11. This brought our insightful tour of the financial district to an end, however the education did not stop there.
We took the Subway to the Grand Central Food Hall for lunch and then walked to the United Nations. This was my personal highlight of the trip. The building was spectacular and to learn about the work of the organisation was even better. Our tour guide helped us to understand about the goals of the UN: ensuring peace, promoting human rights and encouraging stable global development. These combined with the UN’s ‘Global Goals’ have shown us how such a large organization can help to aid international development. We got to see the final objective in action when we saw a conference on tax avoidance in developing countries. The highlight of the tour was visiting the UN General Assembly and Security Council chamber, allowing one to understand how decisions are made which help to facilitate global development- a key part of the macroeconomics A Level syllabus. This also served as a focus of how development economics can be used in a global context, an area of study that many A-Level economics students will go on to study- and perhaps work in.
On our final day we had free time which we used to immerse ourselves into the culture of such a diverse city.”
Connie, Year 12 student