Hi everyone. Here's my response to another Chevening essay question. Looking forward to your feedback to accurately respond to the prompt references. Thanks so much!
CAREER PLAN QUESTION
Chevening is looking for individuals who have a clear post-study career plan. Please outline your immediate plans upon returning home and your longer term career goals. You may wish to consider how these relate to what the UK government is doing in your country. (minimum word count: 100 words, maximum word count: 500 words)
One of my immediate goals upon returning home, is to implement an 8-12 month Olympic Values based leadership education program that I intend to develop as part of my Master's degree coursework and exposure to best practices in evidence-based sports interventions. For rolling out this program I plan to initially partner a sports organization/NGO through my network. As part of the partnership, I intend to get access to young people either in schools or community sports clubs, while providing the technical resources, implementation support and training on the curriculum to youth facilitators through the ToT (Train the Trainer) model.
Once proof of concept is established, my long term goal is to amplify the impact of this program by integrating it into the work of some of best non-profits who have been working relentlessly to address youth development issues across India. I aim to do this by launching a fellowship program that connects young talent with high impact sports and youth development organizations in India. The fellowship will be based on the co-fellow model pairing a young sports coach or physical education graduate in India with a development graduate from the UK (including my alma-mater). By including local voices and integrating cross cultural collaboration into the fellowship I am sure we will be able to provide critical capacity building support to these non-profits and create sustainable change.
Since my career goals are perfectly aligned with DFID's current priorities and strategic objectives as part of its new development relationship with India, I would like to actively engage DFID and its partners to help India achieve the full potential of its demographic dividend by focussing on two major areas where I want to make an impact -
1. Improve the lives of young women and girls (through life skills and health training)
2. Create jobs and opportunities for the youth (the fellowship will provide critical employability skills training in addition to the immersive field experience)
As such, the Chevening scholarship is going to play the role of a catalyst in kickstarting my ambitions of establishing a sports social enterprise. By leveraging the knowledge and network of Chevening, I am sure I would be able to make a significant contribution in educating, inspiring and mobilizing the youth in India to overcome their biggest challenges, live healthier, more productive lives, and be agents for change in their communities.
Holt Educational Consultant - / 10,693 3497
Imran, this is a very well developed essay that clearly shows how the UK interests in your country will be promoted and how you will be able to help assist in developing the training programs there as well, with the help of your UK education. However, I don't think that you should wait until the last part of the essay to mention the DFID interests in the country. Since you are planning to establish a sports organization in your country upon your return, why don't you try to see if you can seek funding from a UK based organization for it? Find a UK based sponsor who might be able to have a permanent interest in this program you will be starting. Maybe the DFID can help you out in that aspect. The earlier you can involve the UK organization in your post study plans, the better your essay will be received as an applicant submission. I would not change anything in the essay. I just want you to improve upon an already excellent plan for your return home. I am sure Chevening will be highly receptive to your plans if you can give the UK a more prominent role in these career objectives of yours.
Thanks once again for your valuable feedback Holt! I am considering including information about UK based sponsors to roll out the initial program upon my return. However, DFID no longer supports development projects financially due to a shift in their strategic objectives as per their most recent plans. So I wasn't sure if it would be received well by Chevening. Should I focus more on the lines of seeking program design and implementation support from the UK government or UK based institutions? Thanks so much.
Holt Educational Consultant - / 10,693 3497
Why don't you try to find out if sports associations in your country have been receiving aid from the UK first? Ask them how they receive their sponsorship and then decide if the organization(s) helping them can somehow work with your post study plans. More often than not, the UK continues their support of a project in a different manner. Perhaps they create a dedicated organization, or they consider grants for specific fields based on certain requirements. Basically, your request might be sent to a more appropriate foundation, organization, or government institution. You need to do some research in this instance and then revise your essay in the most appropriate manner. Since the DFID no longer supports projects along your line, then you should not mention them at all. Like I said, find an alternative connection through your existing network. With any luck, you will find that evasive UK organization that can help you make the solid connection your essay requires.