I am already enrolled in a Grad program but due to mismatch of my research interests with the present area i am applying to other Grad school programs. I wanted to know whether I have to mention it in the statement of purpose that i am an already enrolled student and I want to change my research area.
Please help me with this issue. Also I have written a rough draft of my statement of Purpose but it is turning out to be a very lengthy one. Can you help me in cutting down the length of the essay and also point out the unnecessary things mentioned in the essay.
Materials can be undoubtedly credited as the brink of the modern technological revolution where small is the called the new big. With the development in the field of material science, we have witnessed a tremendous transformation in almost every aspect of our life, be it medicine, telecommunication, energy, transportation and what not. Better and smarter material in conjunction with a reduced dimension is the call for every technological application. It has been found that at the reduced dimension it is possible to harness some exciting new properties which are inaccessible in their bulk counterparts. Nature has always served as an inspiration for many amazing scientific and technological innovations and this trend of miniaturization is not entirely new, as Mother Nature has been practicing nano from ages now. To understand how nature does nano and to replicate it in laboratories to produce highly efficient materials is my ultimate dream. And it is to bring that dream in action I am motivated to pursue a doctoral degree in Material Science and Engineering.
Right from my high school days, I was particularly interested in Science and Mathematics. Having being brought up in a very small underdeveloped town called XXX in the north-eastern part of XXX; I didn't received much exposure to nurture my innate affinity for these subjects. But I withstood through all odds and I decided to take up Physics as my undergraduate major. I moved to XXX city and enrolled in the Bachelors degree with Physics Honors. It is here where I strengthened my foundations in the basics of Physics through a variety of courses. In due course of time, I was intrigued by the physics of condensed phases of materials. Later, in a condensed matter theory class Dr. XXX introduced me to the fascinating domain of Nanotechnology through Feynman's famous lecture "There's Plenty of Room at the Bottom". The lecture focussed on how Nanoscience and Technology is acting a platform where all the disparate branches of science and engineering are converging. It was some sort of fairytale experience for me as till that time I have developed a puritanical notion that each discipline has its own impermeable barrier. Inspired by the talk, I found myself deeply drawn to this interdisciplinary field which encouraged me to take a Masters degree in Nanoscience and Technology in XXX University, one of the top Central Universities in XXX.
I took a myriad of interdisciplinary courses ranging from During the Masters course which have consolidated my knowledge about the concepts governing the world of Nanoscience and Technology as well as its varied applications in different areas. Some of the courses like Quantum Mechanics, Computational Techniques, Instrumental methods of Analysis, Surface Science, Polymer Science, Biosynthesis of nanoparticles and their applications etc. have helped me broaden my horizon and get a strong footing in this interdisciplinary area.
As a part of my Master's thesis work I was selected to work on the field of nanotechnology for waste water remediation. The ever increasing problem of contaminated drinking water afflicting the people all round the globe made my research thesis an interesting exercise. I developed surface functionalised nanomagnets to remove heavy metals from laboratory treated aqueous solutions. With varying surface chemistry of the nanomagnets I achieved a very high percentage removal of highly toxic heavy metals like Arsenic and Cadmium using a very facile method. To get deeper into the experimental results, I studied the kinetics and thermodynamics of the adsorption mechanisms. During this project work I got a working knowledge of XRD, UV-Vis spectroscopy and Atomic Absorption Spectroscopy. In this work I have also done a detailed magnetic property study of the nanomagnets which were basically iron oxide nanoparticles. Through this project I also get familiarised to instruments like Physical property measurement system, Atomic Force Microscopy, DC susceptibility measurement system and Optical Microscopy. Though it was a small project I gained valuable experience as an independent researcher and also I learnt the value of many disciplines in practice. Above all the invaluable lesson learnt while working in this project is that research should always be for the betterment of the society.
After completion of my Masters degree I joined Dr. XXX's lab as a research student where I worked on magnetic materials for biotechnological applications. During this period I mentored two Masters student thesis work. In XXX's work we have synthesized amorphous carbon passivated iron oxide nanoparticles via a facile hydrothermal reaction. An extensive study has been carried out to understand the morphological as well as the magnetic properties of these nanoparticles. In addition we have evaluated the cytotoxity of these nanosystems using MTT assay and found it to be benign for biomedical applications. In XXX's thesis work we have synthesized template free mesoporous magnetic nanospheres and we have carried out a detailed microstructural as well as magnetic study. We have done the relaxivity measurements of these nanosystems which reflected their potential use in Magnetic Resonance imaging.
I have assisted Dr. XXX as a teaching assistant during two courses; NS-501 Surface science and NS-502 Optical Properties of Nanostructures, in the Autumn semester of 2013. I have gained a lot of experience while working as a teaching assistant. This has helped me to get a better understanding of the two subjects which holds a very important place in the field of Nanotechnology. I was able to hone my communication skills as well as improve my time management skills during this teaching apprenticeship. In this brief period, I have got the opportunity to develop a well rounded personality which makes me a suitable candidate for working in a team. I have successfully carried out a diverse range of responsibilities bestowed upon me. I have also aided Dr. XXX in developing his book entitled "Kinetics of Heterogenous Solid State Processes" which is soon going to be published by Springer.
Though I was thoroughly enjoying the new responsibilities bestowed on me, I somewhat felt that the research area where I was working is not my forte. Maybe because the project involved biology which happened to be my weakest point right from my high school. I was more lured towards the domain of energy research which involved harnessing energy from the mighty sun using nanomaterials. The related challenges associated with this field like high efficiency and lower cost makes it the most enthralling research problem of the present century. Hence, I am looking forward to a Graduate Program where I can work in the development of novel nanomaterials for energy applications.
I believe that my education and experience has provided me with valuable insights to the technical aspects needed to work in this PhD position. I am ready to take up all the challenges in this new area and learn the required methodologies, like electrochemical systems for supercapacitors, to keep my work at par. Throughout my scholastic records and achievements were outstanding and I have been consistently ranked in top 3% of my class. I have received the prestigious Vice Chancellors Gold Medal Award for my excellent academic achievement in my Masters degree. The whole masters program is based on different research projects and subsequent presentations which instilled in me a strong research aptitude. Moreover, the influence of nanotechnology in every aspects of our life has instilled a stir in me to indulge in research as by this way one can get the intellectual joy of doing some creative work and offer service to the society.
Good reputation of having world class education standards, an extremely distinguished faculty members and world class research facilities has motivated me to choose this university. I believe that taking up this PhD position will help me acquire the versatility needed to reach my full potential as an independent researcher. It would therefore be a great privilege to be able to associate myself with such a prestigious organisation. This is why I am applying to this PhD position as I believe that my experience and qualification is an excellent fit for this position. Thank you for your time and consideration.