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Erasmus Mundus Masters in Central and East European, Russian and Eurasian Studies Personal Statement

Meerimia1 1 / -  
Dec 18, 2021   #1
Dear moderators, I kindly ask you to review my personal statement. Thanks in advance!

Erasmus Mundus Masters - Personal Statement

I am applying for the IMCEERES programme due to the fact that I have had a strong passion to learn the history of communism and how it is shaping the future of my country.

Growing up in Chyrak, a small village in Kyrgyzstan, I wondered why our village was isolated from the world, why we, the students, did not get to study in well-equipped classrooms without having a lack of textbooks, why our country was highlighted only from the perspective of political instability on TV channels. I was taught all these were the consequences of our country having been separated from the USSR. Much has changed since then, but since Kyrgyzstan is still going through a period of transformation, I question what the future of a post-communist, yet the young capitalist state will be like. Today, as post-communist states, including Kyrgyzstan, face unprecedented changes and need more assistance on how to adapt to a new world setting both politically, and economically, it is crucial to supply exceptional young leaders from these countries with a wide range of knowledge on the history of communism, democracy, and political expertise, who in turn will advocate for the worldwide advance of the successful transformation of the former communist states. For this reason, I am, Meerimai Stanova, an undergraduate of international relations, highly intend to become a part of the IMCEERES programme to expand the knowledge and experience I will gain during the studies to overall transformation, specifically international affairs of my country and interact with other future specialists to achieve the apex of my goal.

Other than learning the linkage between the communistic history of the post-soviet countries and the present, my academic interest focuses on the integrational processes, specifically the EU and its foreign policy. What I pay close attention to is that the EU has such a rich history of building diplomacy and respect for international rules. I believe that is a living example for the Central Asian integration project. Under the supervision of Professor George Kutlen, I further intensified my knowledge by attending the lectures provided by the former French diplomat Stefano, and the representatives of the Rule of Law project. During my university studies at Kyrgyz National University, majoring in foreign affairs, I became more interested in the impact of the "still-existing" Soviet ideology on the foreign policy of Kyrgyzstan. Under the supervision of professor Beishenov, I have learned that after the collapse of Marxism, which served as the main theoretical basis for the foreign policy of the Soviet Union, there emerged a theoretical vacuum. Therefore, I would be delighted to learn during my master's to respond to the question of how can Kyrgyzstan respond to the real challenges still posed by the post-cold War international environment, and meet the needs that confront "newborn" Kyrgyz diplomacy. Since my academic interest mainly focuses on the formation of foreign policies of Post-Soviet countries, specifically Central Asia, I spend plenty of time analyzing the relative papers written by foreign scholars. IMCEERES programme fits my academic interests because I would love an opportunity to meet professor Luca Anceschi's "Kazakhstani foreign policy in the pre-eurasianist era" has especially drawn my attention. However, there is no accessible work on the foreign policy of Kyrgyzstan of him. Studying at Glasgow University for a semester would give me a perfect opportunity to collaborate with dr. Anceschi and hear his perspectives on Kyrgyzstan. Under his supervision, I would have the honor to assist him with his research on Kyrgyzstan.

During the years of studies at the faculty of International Relations, I have participated in many conferences including the recent one "Kyrgyzstan conference on Afghanistan and its influence on foreign policy". It helped me further develop my analytical and research skills as I accompanied guest lecturers on researching the Eurasian region and its current political situation. This led me to receive an award of The Best Student of CIS countries given to the students with excellent academic and social achievements. I consider myself a good match for the IMCEERES programme , specifically the Eurasian studies pathway, for the courses such as "Russia, China, and the International Politics of Eurasia" complement and advance my knowledge gained during my undergraduate studies. Specifically, political systems of Central Asian countries, Economical and political processes in the world, Foreign Policy of the EU in Central Asia. Moreover, I would like to write my dissertation on "The making of foreign policy in the post-soviet Central Asia". Therefore, in year two-country of choice being Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the language being Bosnian, I believe I will be exposed to learn from the professionals and develop my dissertation at the faculty of international relations and diplomacy.

Recently, during my internship at Search for Common Ground, an international non-governmental organization, I had an opportunity to participate in Central Asian conferences on peacebuilding. This experience has helped me to understand that the actors of international relations are interdependent and the situation in one country can greatly influence the other. When I got to know that, I was inspired to pursue a career at the Ministry of Foreign Relations of Kyrgyzstan (career aspirations). Considering all burning issues discussed during those conferences, such as the Kyrgyz-Tajik border issues, I realized that I want to further study the experience of post-communist countries.

I am attracted to study in Europe because the way that all political, as well as economic actions are directed to the rights of ordinary people will benefit me in researching my academic interest. Finally, returning to my background, I would like to become a representative of village girls of Kyrgyzstan, who might be having the same challenges as I did, to inspire them that they can achieve their academic goals. In doing so, the IMCEERES programme serves me as an instrument to become a role model, providing me the opportunity to study with young leaders from other post-communist countries, discover more about their perspectives, as well as their culture.
Holt  Educational Consultant - / 13,726 4511  
Dec 18, 2021   #2
Since you are applying for a masters program, the story about how you grew up in your home country has become irrelevant. The opening paragraph should refer more to your professional , diplomatic, and academic questions regarding the future development of your country. The first paragraph sounds highly elementary and does not really portray yourself as an actual professional with advanced academic and professional considerations.

In the paragraph where your mention specific names, I need to ask if they will be the people writing your recommendation letters for this program? If not, then revise that part to seem more general in approach instead. The people who wrote the references for you will be interviewed to prove that you were not the one who wrote your recommendation letter. So if they will not be part of your scholarship application path, do not mention them at all.

I am worried about your professional exposure as it applies to this field of study. You mention only an internship as a professional qualification and some seminars that, it appears, you attended as a student. That means your professional exposure is weak. It appears you do not have any professional exposure, in relation to your interests, that will support your application. The other applicants will have tremendous international and national related exposures which will give their interest in the course a higher and better degree of importance when compared to yours. Please strengthen this weak link in your presentation.
monicaaa0017 7 / 15  
Dec 21, 2021   #3
Last paragraph where you said that you want to study in Europe because of their political and economic action will benefit you. You should explain more detail how those action will benefit your research interest. In what ways do they relate to your study. Be more specific as it is important point for you to study in Europe

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