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Applying for Korean Government Graduate Scholarship: A Meaningful Impact On East Asian Societies.

sephiran17 1 / 1  
Jan 12, 2018   #1
Hello everyone!
Could you please help me with this?
This is my Self Introduction letter to apply for the KGSP Scholarship.
I am required to take this points in account, and I would like to know if my essay properly fulfills them, as well as any other suggestion and/or advice from the community would be extremely appreciated.

Thank you in advance!

A Meaningful Impact On East Asian Soceties

Greetings, NIIED committee, my name is Angel Noriega, a social psychologist in the study of East Asian societies. For me, life is an opportunity to keep learning how to help others become better persons. But in our human condition, we can only pick to learn so much about certain topics. My pick is East Asian societies. Every day I read about them, and I try to share my knowledge and experiences on this region with my friends, relatives or anyone who has an inquire or a misconception about this region. I'm proud to know that many people turn to me to know more about Korea, for as a son of two professors, I was educated on the notion that knowledge was useless unless it was shared.

I consider myself a very reflective person that analyze a wide range of possibilities before taking an impactful decision on my future goals, for when I take one, I commit fully to the achievement of said goal through hard work and strong dedication. That's why I studied hard to enroll at UNAM, Mexico's number one University. There, I decided to study Psychology in the field of Social Sciences, because the rapid development of the world made me curious about how these changes would eventually shape the mindset of nations. My dedication to social science was such, that I got elected as Social Science Counselor of The School of Psychology at UNAM for two years, a role in which I contributed to improve the syllabus and help other students with their academic inquires.

My interest on East Asian Cultures took me to develop a very solid sense of combining it with my professional studies, which, in the end, resulted on researching on youth precarity in East Asian societies. This led me to find my dream, my role in life: to become a researcher in East Asian societies and help in the alleviation of some of the issues that they face. For my bachelor's degree thesis, I used these theoretical perspectives to closely study Japan, their history, economy, society, culture, religious views and even the Japanese language to explain a youth precarity and social withdrawal phenomenon in that country: the hikikomori. My commitment and dedication to my study led me to travel to Japan to work as a volunteer with hikikomori rehabs.

Much as I knew about Japan, I needed to achieve a broader view on East Asia and the particularities of each one of its countries, that motivated me to choose SKKU for an exchange semester of my bachelor's (Spring 2017) because of its syllabus on East Asian studies and Sociology, taking courses like "Understanding Asian cultures" and "Comparative thought and cultures: Horizon's East-West". I also took a Basic Korean program in SKKU, that was my first approach to the language, and I felt very comfortable due to some of the similarities it shares with Japanese, so it was somewhat familiar to me. Even though I had to temporally suspend my Korean language learning for my bachelor's degree thesis, I recently started studying it again at UNAM's language school at Basic 2 level (there are six level for the overall language course).

As an exchange student living in Korea, I found myself many times helping my western classmates to be aware of the particularities and the nature of East Asian cultures, I discovered a true sense of fulfillment in doing this, for I felt that my knowledge could help in the improvement of the East-West relationships through mutual understanding.

During my time at SKKU I felt happy to learn from such capable professors. Each one of my courses in there had a significative impact on my view of academic life and global affairs, it filled many gaps that I couldn't in Mexico due to the cultural and geographic distance between my interest and my country of birth. I was so motivated that my best academic performance up to date was achieved at SKKU.

When I talk about Korean culture, I do not refer to traditional culture on its own, nor the simplification that sometimes the popularity of hallyu has prompted on the mind of foreigners. While both of those are indeed part of Korea, there's so much more; when I talk about Korean culture, I talk about the continuous evolving nature of it through the interactions between the needs of the society and the dreams of the individual, the hard worker that achieved the "Miracle of the Han river" in the past and the development leader of the present, the centralization of Seoul and the lifestyles in the other cities like Gwangju, Busan, Wando and Jeju which I got the chance to experience; and many other aspects that can tell us why and how Korea has developed its national identity and created their social reality.

I want my research to have a meaningful impact on Korean society, so I decided to study the 'Hell Joseon' phenomenon for my master's degree, trying to shed some light on the issue and propose ways to approach it and, hopefully, contribute in the alleviation of distress and societal pressure that this situation has caused on the Korean youth.

To study this phenomenon, I need a profound comprehension of Korean society, as well as being in direct contact with the Korean youth (they will be my objective group of study) and work closely with professors and experts in the topic, making it necessary for me to study in Korea.

I believe that I have prepared my entire life for this, I feel privileged for all the opportunities that allowed me to develop the academic perspectives and proper attitude to one day become a prolific researcher on this region and, in doing so, create a bridge of understanding between the East and the West.

Holt [Contributor] - / 7,294 1838  
Jan 12, 2018   #2
ANGEL, the last part of your essay in relation to your interest and desire to study in Korea is appropriate. You can save that for use in the revised essay that you will be writing. When you write your revised essay, you need to make sure that you discuss the proper information in each section that is provided by the prompt. Let me break the necessary information down for you in an outline form. That way you will know how to precisely revise the first part of this essay. Here we go!

Your course of life, your view of life, study background, your hopes & wishes, etc
- Course of life refers to your family background. Who are your parents? What makes them special? What kind of family do you come from? How have your family members supported your dreams and ambitions?

- Based on your relationship with your family, how did they influence your outlook in life? What part of how you live your life would you consider as having been heavily influenced by your family? Which of your parents do you think you are more alike in terms of dreams and ambitions and why?

- For the study background, focus more on presenting your accomplishments in high school and college. Remember, this is a highly competitive scholarship so only the students who can prove that they can academically keep up will be considered for acceptance. The more awards and recognition you received in high school and college, the better your application will be in terms of comparison with other applicants.

- Hopes and wishes refer to your future plans. You may discuss where you are personally and professionally at the moment and then indicate how this Korean educational experience might be able to help you achieve more of your ambitions in life (hopes and wishes).

It appears to me that you have a highly complex academic background but you do not have much , or anything to present in the essay with regards to your professional background. Why is that? As a masters degree student, there needs to be a professional reference to the importance of this study line to your professional ambitions or experiences. I do not see any reference to that at the moment. This will result in a very weak essay and may lessen its consideration factor because you will be skipping one whole prompt in the presentation of your information. You must include a professional background in this essay. There are no exceptions, no if's or but's about it.
OP sephiran17 1 / 1  
Jan 12, 2018   #3
Thank you very much!
Regarding your comment on Professional experience, I forgot to mention my work at the Cyberpsychology Laboratory where I was Director of a project on Youth Precarity in Mexico, i will immediatly add it.

Do you consider paragraph 7 "When I talk about Korean culture,[...]" necessary?
Also, regarding my education experience ini relation to NIIED, I put this in my Statement of purpose:
"The Hell Joseon phenomenon came to my awareness during my courses in SKKU and the experiences that my Korean friends, both from classes and the taekwondo club, shared. There was a general sense of hopelessness and resignation.

This is related to what I did in my bachelor's degree thesis, and even though Korean and Japanese cultures are very different, they both face similar problems relating the psychosocial effects of youth unemployment, for both suffer from the consequences of the rapid industrialization yet still conserve many of their traditional views of life. This expertise makes me feel confident enough on my capability and commitment to conduct a research on a completely different society yet remaining culturally sensitive enough to be impartial and to not severely bias my work."

I didn't want to put it on myfrst letter as it would take a lot of space that could be addressed in the rest of the documents. Do you recommd leaving it at the Statement of purpose or move it to my Self Introduction Letter?

Thank you again. Please make it urgent for a new review.

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