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SOP - Ph.D in Environmental Engineering is the foundation


hiren1982 1 / 4  
May 26, 2009   #1
Engineering is the foundation

Engineering is the foundation on which humankind builds its world and engineers can shape the world into a better and more sustainable place to live. This is probably most true about Environmental Sciences than any other field of study. Environment sciences have witnessed various recent developments such as waste water treatment, CO2 emission control, solid-waste management / recycling program, and the recent US government program to increase fuel efficiency of automobiles. These ever-changing frontiers of the field of environmental studies have always fascinated me and inculcated zeal and strong yearning to contribute to this field.

I always had a strong curiosity to learn science and its applications, and this made me chose engineering as an undergraduate. After scoring impressively in my Class XII, I opted to study Chemical Engineering at one of the XXXX (place name) most reputed colleges, XXXX(college name). The exhaustive curriculum at XXXX (college name) not only helped me develop a sound foundation in all major areas of Chemical Engineering but also provided me with an insight on to how the economy of an industry works.

My interest in Chemical Engineering further deepened during the exposure to XXXX (firm name) in XXXX (place name) as a trainee. During this training, I appreciated the various theoretical classroom concepts put into practice to manufacture useful products. At the same time, I made the decision to pursue chemical engineering in a Master's program. Hence, I joined Chemical Engineering at XXXX (uinevrsity name) and graduated in Dec'06 with major in Chemical Engineering and a minor in Natural Gas Engineering. I used to think that costly equipments were a better selection anytime. However, my myth shattered during my "Principal of Heat Transfer" coursework in the Graduate Program. I came recognized that chemical engineers look for optimum, economical solutions rather than ideal, expensive ones.

After completing my studies, I joined XXXX (firm name) as a process engineer, a position I still hold. At XXXX (firm name), I worked on various projects related to oil & gas industry, mainly downstream sector. In one of the interesting projects, I was assigned to an expansion project of a petrochemical unit. The scope of work includes sizing reactor, distillation columns exchangers and circulation pumps as major pieces of equipment. Besides sizing equipment, I was also involved in hydraulic analysis of an emergency venting of off-gases to a flare. Here, I got acquainted with the Pollution and Emission reduction problems faced by the unit. As a natural outcome of my interest in Emission Control, adequate emphasis was provide on off-gases discharge method details and incorporation of all these in Piping and Instrumentation Diagrams(P&ID's). The concern to protect environment stuck mind and owing to knowledge and experiences, I could better understand the gravity of environmental issues faced by the industry.

Another exciting and enlightening experience has been during Process Hazards Analysis (PHA) meeting, we installed a new relief valve on an existing pressure vessel containing acidified solution (99% water and 1% acid). In case of a fire or over pressure by pumping or thermal expansion, the small relief valve would prevent or minimize the consequences of a potentially catastrophic release of toxic hazards to the humans and the environment, along with financial losses. The concept was very simple to safeguard the equipment and any loose which may have occurred. I immediately visualize how health, safety and environmental protection aspects plays a vital role in a project.

My interest in environmental studies further strengthened when I came across environmental experts during my visits at the plant site. They all were experts in this field and I used this opportunity to interact and educate myself about the vastness, scope and significance of this field. I also developed the idea that by pursuing environmental studies I can add value to both the field and myself.

I have always believed that experiences are a part of life's learning curve. I want to give a new dimension to my life by pursuing a PhD in Environmental engineering. I can accomplish this by concentrating on air quality research or solid/hazardous waste research programs offered at XXXX (university name). Both undergraduate and graduate courses have given me a thorough grounding in basic principles of engineering, and the industrial projects I have worked on have better prepared me to pursue further research work in graduate study.

Besides educational activities, extracurricular activities have helped me to develop as a more rounded person. Recently, I have been elected Treasurer for the local section of American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE), which gives me an opportunity to explore and learn the financial side of an organization. I love playing golf and practice yoga and meditation, which gives me immense positive energy and to sail through hectic and demanding schedules.

Studying at XXXX(university name) will give me both the technical skill and the intellectual discipline to become a leader in industry. The personal attention university provides along with academic and research resources are simply great. Moreover, the diversity provided is attractive and I can contribute in my own small way to it. Hence, a PhD will broaden my understanding and enhance my credentials for pursuing independent research. Immediately following the PhD, I see myself working with an environmental consulting firm providing solutions to environmental related issues faced by oil & gas industry.

I scarcely need to say that XXXX(university name), being among the top schools for Environmental Engineering, would surely provide the best in terms of research opportunities, experienced faculty, infrastructural facilities, and an academically stimulating environment. I am aware that a career in research requires strong motivation, hard work, maturity, the capacity to think independently, and the ability to work as a team. I am also confident that I possess these qualities. It is my conviction that through sheer diligence and application, I will be able to make a positive contribution to the ongoing research at your university.

Having done my undergraduate studies from XXXX(university name) and graduate studies from XXXX(university name), I would consider it a privilege to pursue PhD at XXXX(university name) and I hope that I will be given this opportunity. I am confident that I will do complete justice to any opportunity given to me and stand the test of your expectations.
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
May 26, 2009   #2
This SoP starts in the 1950s. In today's world, women can be engineers too. Of all engineers, environmental engineers are especially expected to be alert to contemporary issues and to avoid biases of all kinds. An SoP that begins with the assumption that men build the world will not be viewed kindly by admissions officers, especially if any of them happen to be female! Use gender inclusive language here and in all scholarly writing.

"Imbibe" means to absorb. You probably mean to say "inculcated" or some similar word.

Watch out for wordiness. You say "to be a part of this field and contribute." You should just say "to contribute to this field." Go through the essay, eliminating similarly redundant expressions.

Once you have gotten rid of any unneeded words, go back through and make sure you have commas in all of the places they are needed. You tend to omit the commas that separate subordinate clauses.

Good luck.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
May 26, 2009   #3
Engineering is the foundation on which humankind builds its world, and engineers can shape the world into a better place to live.

These ever-changing frontiers of the field of environmental studies...

to learn science and its applications, and this made me chose engineering as an undergraduate .

are a part of life' s learning curve.
OP hiren1982 1 / 4  
May 26, 2009   #4
Thanks Simone for your valuable suggestions. I will start working on your comments and will let you know. In mean while I just had a thought that I should began my SOP with " Engineering is the foundation on which one builds this world and engineers can shape the world into a better place to live...

Also What do you think about mentioning career goals. Like after completing my PhD my short-term career goal is to work for an consulting firm providing service related to environmental issues. In the long term, I see myself having my own consulting firm in these sector.

Also I'm not sure where should I put above statement. As I am worried above the flow of the essay.

Once again I would like to thank you for your time and help.

Kevin-
Unfortunately I can't say thank you in separate post. So doing it over here. Please let me know what do you thing about it.

I really appreciate your help. Thanks a lot for your time and suggestions.

Regards,
Hiren
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
May 26, 2009   #5
I just had a thought that I should began my SOP with " Engineering is the foundation on which one builds this world and engineers can shape the world into a better place to live...

Hmm, how about, "Engineering is how we build the world, and engineers can shape the world into a better and more sustainable place to live."

Also What do you think about mentioning career goals.

Yes, you definitely should mention your career goals, especially if they are consistent with the ideals you espouse in the essay. You could do this just after talking about the skills you hope to develop.
EF_Simone 2 / 1,986  
May 27, 2009   #6
Good job! Do you feel comfortable with it now?

Engineering is the foundation on which humankind builds its world, and engineers can shape the world into a better and more sustainable place to live. This is probably more true about Environmental Sciences than any other field of study.
OP hiren1982 1 / 4  
May 27, 2009   #7
Thanks a lot for your help. I wouldn't had be possible without you guys.
You guys are doing gr8 job. Keep it up :)
Feeling much better than before.
Once again thanks 4 all ur help.
EF_Sean 6 / 3,491  
May 28, 2009   #8
A couple of minor fixes for your intro:

"Engineering is the foundation on which humankind builds its world and engineers can shapes the world into a better and more sustainable place to live."

"This is probably more true of Environmental Sciences than of any other field of study."


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