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Architecture: Letter of Motivation for Graduate Admission

Jan 20, 2010   #1
Hi, I am going to apply for Master in Architecture/Urban Design and Planning at Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Sweden. I have prepared my Letter of Motivation. Please kindly correct, elaborate, or give critics to the letter below.

Thank you


My interest in Architecture has now been so immense that I can say that my duration of 5 year's study for the entire course of Bachelor of Architecture has been a ride in wonderland. I completed my Bachelor's Degree with utmost sincerity and passion.

Architecture has been a new experience to me, so much that none in my entire family is even closely related to Architecture. I got to know about this amazing world of Architecture through my father, an Electrical Engineer by profession. I had special interests in Painting and Art ever since my childhood. I have spent my vacations in craft making. These started off with making simple decorative pieces to replicating complex objects like transport vehicles and imaginative aircraft by making use of card-board as the principle material. Making models became my passion. Observing these inherent qualities in me, my father gradually allured me to the vast field of Architecture.

What Architecture gave to me were the subjects of these models, rising from those monotonous reproductive models to new, self-conceptualized designs. Slowly, as my Architectural courses continued, modeling in both imaginative and concrete forms began to take precedence. The Building Form began to overwhelm me.

The study of basic architectural courses, such as architectural structure, mechanics and materials science, makes me realize that architecture not only gives importance on aesthetics, but also emphasizes on the more essential functionality and practicality. In that process, I realized that architecture is not only an art, but also more importantly a technology. Five years of college studies gave me a deeper comprehension of architecture, that is, architecture is also part of other cultures - it is subject to other cultures' influence, and at the same time it influences other cultures.

In the initial days of my Architectural courses, I felt a slight lack of imaginative skills in me. It was only towards the beginning of my second year that I began to realize the importance of planning. I now began to visualize the spaces in their totality, although, at first these spaces were confined to sharp rectangular spaces which were later extruded to their third dimension with lessons from my Basic and Architectural Design classes. These spaces were more often clustered into a larger space to give a magnified appearance. My emphasis remained on the built-form that represented the theme of the subject and the required spaces were closely knitted into this form.

I remember being told in the second year of my Bachelor's courses, by one of my teachers, that "unless you put a function to your creation - it's not architecture, it's just visual art".

It was from my third year of Architectural study that I began to adopt an exceptional approach to my design process. The third year design topic was to design a neighborhood sports complex on a real existing site. I still recall the words of my professor that a design proposal has to be unique in a way that if the same structure were to be conveniently placed on any other site, it would prove to be just as unsuitable there. This, he said, would be achieved by carefully observing the site in reference and tapping its topographical design features. These features would in turn explore the various design solutions that only add to the process of achieving a concrete and harmonious solution.

In my first critical exposure to Urban Planning and Design, as a student of the fourth year of Architecture, I got the chance to work on an urban issue which was "Re-designing of a national park named, Osmani Udyan in Dhaka city". This project involved with a detailed review of the considerations that went into the development of this node, the general planning, the existing Natural and Climatic restrictions, Transportation Network, Health, Education, Entertainment, Future Reservations, Ground Services, etc. In short, I had to play with the major issues of urban planning.

After my graduation in 2008, I joined one Building Design House named M.Rahman & Associates (Jan 2008 -July 2008) and then a leading Consulting House named BCL Associates Ltd. (Aug 2008 till today). I learned designing and work scope framing, project planning scheduling, etc. Presently I am a member of a team engaged in feasibility study, assessment and analysis of the project requirement, architectural design works and preparing design report of two projects at Afghanistan named Balkh University at Mazar-i-Sharif and Nangarhar University at Jalalabad - a World Bank Funded Project. After working with such projects, now I realize that in order to build higher skill and to learn new technologies in this field, higher studies in the field of Landscape Architecture in reputed International Institution is very essential.

Now I feel that I have had a fair amount of exposure in this field. This exposure has given me a solid platform through almost one and half year's of experience in a leading consulting house where I am working now. I have realized how Architectural theory that was taught in college varies in many respects to the one that prevails in these practical offices. This difference has been reconciled in many ways as part of my practical training experience. However, I feel that I have not satisfied my urge to learn, especially when there is so much still to learn. After studying the building form in its isolation, I have developed special interest in the study of their groups with respect to their Urban setting, Social and Environmental context, in addition to other needs of economic and political importance.

For me a Graduate Degree is simply not an end. I have strong desire to push a head. I plan to put in a great deal in my education to build my career. To fully utilize my time spent in graduate school, I now require a program that can provide me with the best faculty, resources, and educational tools available. Your University can rightly provide me those and I hope that I will be given an opportunity to not only study at your University, but also to become fully absorbed in your planning community.

I am applying after viewing the course curriculum provided by your University. As the research focus and facilities available in your department complement my research interests and requirements, I believe that being a part of your department would not only enrich my career, but would also help me to exhibit my maximum potentials. I further feel that as a Masters student at your University, I can avail myself of numerous exciting career opportunities.

Mouri Rahman

EF_KevinThreads: 8
Posts: 13,840
[Contributor] 129  
Jan 22, 2010   #2
This first sentence takes too long to get to the point:
My interest in Architecture has now been so immense that I can say that my duration of 5 year's study for the entire course of Bachelor of Architecture has been a ride in wonderland.

Give the reader one idea to process, and then another. Don't give too many ideas in a single sentence.

Try to make this sentence shorter: These features would in turn explore the various design solutions that only add to enhanc e the process of achieving a concrete and harmonious solution.

After that clunky first sentence, i thought many of your sentences would be long and clunky, but I was wrong! This is beautifully written.

I have strong desire to push ahead . I plan to invest in a great deal of attention in my education to build my career.
Jan 23, 2010   #3
Thanks kevin, thanks a lot for your suggestion. It would really help me. I was quite confused about the letter. So what do u think, is the content ok and convincing?
EF_KevinThreads: 8
Posts: 13,840
[Contributor] 129  
Jan 25, 2010   #4
Yes, I think it is. People understand your seriousness when you tell them about the specific things you intend to do in the next few years. You achieve more specificity than many others, i think, so you will do well! It is all about telling the reader a story about what you are trying to do; this makes people feel something and want to support you. Also, it is just plain impressive when people have action plans.


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