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Study & Career Objectives for SOP MS in Zoology Program


shisho 1 / 1  
Jan 5, 2010   #1
Hi all, any help/ constructive criticism is appreciated. I'm pretty bad at putting my thoughts into words, and I know I do not have a solid conclusion.

Describe the objectives of your graduate study, your area of specialization within the graduate program, and your long-range professional goals. Include any additional information that will assist the graduate admissions committee in evaluating your application.

My first experience with a coral reef was in 2002. I was 15 years old, visiting my extended family that lives in Australia, and my cousins had taken me on a trip to Cairns, a city that is bordered by the Great Barrier Reef. I took my first dive off the tour boat, and upon sight of the corals, their magnificent beauty struck me. I was told not to brush against them or stand on them, but beyond this and their aesthetics, that was the extent of my knowledge of coral reefs for a long period of time. I was determined to become a civil engineer by that point, and I went on to engineering school, suppressing my passion for nature and animals.

Several changes in my academic plans later, I had finally decided on becoming a biology major in Queens College, taking a course in ecology in the Fall of 2008, which required a research paper on any ecological issue of our choice. After seeing a short article on a news site on conservation efforts in the Great Barrier Reef, I was reminded of my experience there and decided to do my research paper on the subject. As I did my research, I was amazed by the complexity of the ecosystem and all the species it harbors, surprised as to how vital they are to the biosphere and horrified by their current rate of destruction due to various factors, many of them anthropogenic.

For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be part of a profession that has a positive impact on the lives of others, whether it was becoming a veterinarian, becoming and expert on sustainable engineering or aiding human nutrition in the developing world. I continue with my desire to contribute to the wellbeing of this planet, and this desire solidified after taking a graduate level course in biodiversity last summer in Ethiopia. I witnessed the devastating effects of several factors degrading the vast variety of biomes within the country, from deforestation to overpopulation to the near extinction of several endemic species, all of which are much harder to see in the developed city I have always lived in. This continued to stimulated my passions for general environmental conservation, and furthermore, in coral reef conservation.

In addition, the course in Ethiopia gave me the opportunity to do an extended amount of fieldwork. As an Undergraduate Research and Mentoring in the Biological Sciences student, I was able to take my experience in the field, collecting baboon DNA and observing behavior, and transfer it into a lab setting, looking at the project at a molecular level. It has given me skills in both situations, which are vital to any form of research, and which I thoroughly enjoy.

I believe that the coursework and research opportunities at the University of Hawaii at Manoa are ideal for my passions in the field of conservation biology and Hawaii is an optimal location for studying coral reef ecology. With a Master of Science in Zoology, I will be able to further my knowledge in the field of biology and eventually gain a more detailed understanding of the interconnectivity of all living things. After attaining a Master's degree, I hope to continue to get a Ph.D. in the field so I can apply it either academically, and pique the interest of other students, or directly apply my knowledge in the work force.
menon_ranjit 1 / 15  
Jan 5, 2010   #2
after several deliberations on my academic plans, Several changes in my academic plans later I had finally decided on becoming a biology major in Queens College

great essay!
OP shisho 1 / 1  
Jan 6, 2010   #3
Ah, thank you Ranjit, that sounds much better!
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Jan 15, 2010   #4
Several changes in my academic plans later, I had finally decided on becoming become a biology major in Queens College. taking a course in ecology in the Fall of 2008, which required I found myself writing a research paper on "any ecological issue of our choice," and I turned my attention to the Great Barrier Reef.

That is an idea I had to help you surge through those long, clunky sentences.

This is another sentence that is suffocatingly long:
For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be part of a profession that has a positive impact on the lives of others, whether it was (let's not use whether it was; it is sort of clunky, ad we are trying to reduce clunkiness). Seeking a meaningful profession, I have considered veterinary medicine , becoming and expert on sustainable engineering or aiding human and also nutrition, with intentions to try to alleviate suffering in the developing world.

I hope that idea might be helpful for you. I don't know if the part about the veterinarian aspiration really fits in this sentence.. because I think the power of the sentence is in the idea about helping people in the developing world.

:-)


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