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People in my hometown always associate "project" and "project people" with hope of a better change

Thao Nguyen 1 / 1  
Nov 23, 2014   #1
Hi guys, this is my SOP draft for Masters in Strategic Project Management. It'd be great if you can read and leave a comment. Many thanks to you.

I am writing to demonstrate my strong desire to be admitted to the Masters in Strategic Project Management under XXX scholarship program. Having passion in doing and consulting Business Project, I deeply understand the necessity of having a strong grounding in Strategic Project Management. My strong academic background, experience diversity and qualifications will guarantee you a successful case in your scholarship program.

Living in a suburban area where the national trading airport locates, I have witnessed the blossom of a number of projects, implemented or still on-hold. It could be a new bridge, an industrial zone or a modern community that eases our lives. As years come by, people in my hometown always associate "project" and "project people" with hope of a better change, in prosperity or living standard. Since then, I always want myself to be a part, even an agent of initiating these changes.

But are these changes always positive? My academic background and experience has been built to answer this question. I enrolled the National Economics University, one of the biggest universities in YYY where I gained firm background and fundamentals in major of International Economics and Business. In recent decades, massive foreign investment has resulted in infrastructure improvement and local strengths development. However, the more I studied, the more I realized the flaw of these project booms. I enjoyed applying quantitative and conceptual skills to analyze issues and work out solution from both individual and organization side. Most of current business projects heavily rely on natural resources and low labor price which quickly archive high return on investment but losing long-term sustainability. Many impacts are unforeseen such as lack of technology transferring, social tension and environment destruction. Meanwhile, companies and entrepreneurs are unaware of consequences of these issues to their business and even ignoring warnings. While government is working in macro policies, if every businessman and project leader is well-aware and equipped knowledge to balance three factors: economic, social and environment, the effect of these investments will be incredibly amplified. Personally, I realized there is a huge room for the next generation of business leaders and managers knowing to make long-standing positive changes.

Project management skill, in my opinion, is a life art appearing in numerous forms. I was captivated to consider each of my wants is a small project with objective and timeframe from learning a new language to creating a writing blog. In class, I took every chance to practice leadership skill by continuously working as a group leader. The fact that people working together towards a common goal and I am able to inspire others is always appealing to me. When I got the first prize Economics Student Competition and had chance to learn from senior managers in Executive Management course, I was fascinated by how they organize projects within business portfolios and manage to effectively structure them. There was an urge to experience a big project on my own.

That was the reason I decided to expose the practical angle of project management by developing a voluntary project, entitled "Voluntary tour". It is a combination of social work and tourism whereas financial profit goes back to support project site community. This program is widely welcomed by international customers with increasing applied prototypes. As a project board member, I have learnt to analyze real market factors and combine social-economic context to initiate a business project. I experienced conducting surveys to study the increasing trend of travelling to remote areas and suitable support from tourists for the local community apart from short-term financial aid. Marketing lessons were applied to form the unique selling point in which traveler-participant directly involves in training and sharing skills to locals. It ranges from teaching literacy and art, guiding sanitary habits to planting tree. Core human resources were recruited and allocated to guarantee the operation. More importantly, from theory to practice, I underwent challenges and realized the importance of not only being passionate but also patient, flexible and strong to have fruitful outcome. I became stronger by repelling the fear of failure and being rejected. These valuable lessons assisted me to grow up and stay firm with career choice in Project Management.

Upon graduating from school, I was offered a place in ZZZ YYY Leadership Internship Program and then WWW, a top Japanese corporation playing an active role in investor network. Working in brand management function, I had chances to work as project leader to manage campaigns that require strategic thinking, cross-functional communication and timeline management. My jobs have brought me valuable learnings. I had a glimpse at the process that consumer goods produced in Thailand or China using European technology and distributed in ASEAN countries with optimal investment and timeline. Working in these multi-national corporations would also bring in environments to team up with individuals from a range of backgrounds and to learn from their perspectives. I have learnt to aim high, strive for excellent and put problems under different angles to find best solution. All comes to a burning desire to establish a consulting service specializing in brand and project management to support local entrepreneurs, especially the ones funded by foreign direct investment. My goal is to maximize local capacity, leverage the opportunities that I have had, so that each individual and community can benefit a positive change through social-economic projects.

A Master in Strategic Project Management from your program is the key to achieve my goals at this stage of my career. Such an educational endeavor will equip me to utilize my knowledge and expertise in management to build and support local enterprises to optimize the international business opportunities. Moreover, the program mobility scheme would help me to experience different context of economy and customs to draw valuable lessons for my country. I will be honor to contribute my business perspective and share the market situation, potential opportunities in a developing-country to the course. My capability will assure the course quality and school value as well as promoting culture exchange. Upon the completion of the course, I have plan to work in a consultancy firm for three years to get professional and brush up the skills with an aim to prepare for the establishment of my own business.

To realize my plan, I do hope that I can get your financial aids to pursue my further study as a Master of Strategic Project Management. High quality education system is essential for YYY student to catch up with the global integration though the scholarships quantity is limited. Despite that fact that there are few opportunities for people from private sector like me, I would like to try my best to get this scholarship and prove to be a right decision, not only in winning the grant but also creating the impact later on.

I believe that the admissions committee will find my academic strength and career vision commensurate with the requirements of your program in Master of Strategic Project Management.
vangiespen - / 4,137 1449  
Nov 23, 2014   #2
Thao, when writing a statement of purpose, it is always in your best interest to mention as little as possible about your college background. That is because when you apply to masters or PhD studies, it is understood that you already have ample professional experience that has brought you more hands on rather than theoretical education. These higher studies always center around advanced studies in direct relation to your line of work so any of your childhood dreams, ambitions, inspirations, and high school or college accomplishments no longer apply as strongly for consideration in your application. I advise you to revise the essay while keeping the following paragraphs which strongly apply to your SOP:

Base your SOP on the following basic guide questions:
1. What is your purpose in applying for higher studies? (This is usually work related in terms of promotions and/or a change of career within the same occupation)

2. What field of higher learning are you applying to ?
3. How does your current work and training experience relate to these studies? (This would be the best place to summarize your college experience)
4. What are your short and long term goals in pursuing this degree? How do you expect it to help you attain your goals and ambitions?

Those are actually the only required information in an SOP so if you follow these guide questions, you will find that you have written a tighter and more informative SOP without really needing to use too many words.
OP Thao Nguyen 1 / 1  
Nov 25, 2014   #3
vangiespen, thanks so much for your feedback. In fact, I am desparate in revising my SOP. Every time I read my writing, I do feel uncomfortable as it is not impressive and overly long.

Thanks again, I'd try my best!

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