For visitors, travel, student and other international travel medical insurance.

Visit or call +1 (866) INSUBUY or +1 (972) 985-4400
Study In USA

Statement of Purpose

All Experiences
Fields marked as * are required.

Subject is required.

Comment is required.

By submitting this post, you agree to Terms of Use.

Experience is successfully added.

Undergraduate degree
College/University: Amherst College, Amherst, MA
School Attended: Cathedral & John Connon School, Mumbai
Junior College Attended: Cathedral & John Connon School, Mumbai

“In Afghanistan, the men go off to war”, says Banaz, a thirty-two year old Afghani woman, a mother of seven, “but it is the women that fight their whole lives”.
(Time Magazine, December 2001)

Being born a woman in Afghanistan is reason enough to enter into the demoralizing, inescapable battle against the hated Taliban regime. Despite the recent disintegration of the Taliban power, the indelible scars and bruises on these women’s bodies and minds are hard to escape.

While I go to school everyday, girls are being smuggled into dark stingy rooms where they are taught clandestinely, risking their lives. While I bother about which college I am going to attend for the next few years of my life, girls of 15 are being burned for not doing their husbands’ laundry properly. While I choose what I wear every morning, there are women who cover themselves from head to toe in burkhas, in the sweltering heat, so that they do not run the risk of drawing the attention of men of the community. While I spend time with my family and friends, women are tortured by their husbands, who believe that their holy book, the Koran, gives them the right to control their many wives in whichever way they please. While I wonder what I will be when I grow up, doctors and other professionals are prohibited from pursuing their careers – because they are women.

I, too, am a woman from a developing nation, but I have been born into a life where I can make my own decisions, where I can be whatever I want to be without being limited by the laws of my country. But I am among the few, more fortunate women in India.

I look around me everyday and I see the plight of the women begging on the streets, the rag pickers, even the sweeper and washerwoman who work in the area – and then I see myself and a few lucky others, and this triggers off in me a feeling of sheer frustration and outrage.

What really bewilders me is the fact that, in India, a nation that is renowned for its diversity, culture and tradition – a nation where equality is a fundamental right – women are tormented and beaten for not being able to pay enough money as dowry to their husbands’ families. Here, in blatant as is in Afghanistan, but that does not mean it doesn’t prevail. A woman, in most sections of societies in India, is treated no better than an object that is bought and sold in the market. Her only use to work in the kitchen and keep her husband satisfied. In India, a girl may be deprived of an education because she obviously isn’t considered worth it. Instead, she is married off at the age of 12 or 13, just so that her father’s debts to the boy’s family are paid off.

A Hindi movie I saw recently called “Chaandni Bar’, based on a true story, really moved me. It was about a woman who moved to Mumbai with great dreams and ambitions of what this vibrant city could offer her. Instead, she was forced to become a dancer at a cheap beer bar and finally, even a prostitute in her bid to try and provide a better future for her children. All is vain, as life comes full circle and her daughter, too, becomes a dancer at Chaandni Bar. The poignant irony is truly thought provoking. However, more than the movie itself, the response of the people in the theater, as the movie progressed had more of an impact on me. We were surrounded by men who were titillated by the image of a woman gyrating to music while being offered money. They whistled and clapped and the true essence of the movie – which was to highlight the futility of women’s aspirations – was totally lost to them. At first, I was simply disgusted by the attitude of these men. But then later, I realized that in most sections of society, the sorry plight of the women of Chaandni Bar was an accepted, normal part of life, and therefore the movie was, for them, nothing but a source of amusement and entertainment. I am definitely not justifying the appalling attitude of those men, but, really, the society we live in allows them to get away with such an attitude to women. I should have known not to expect any different reaction from them.

Obviously, something needs to be done about the sorry situation that women are amidst today. A change in attitude towards women and their vital role in society is an absolute must. And this change is something we have to try and achieve in our lifetime – for the sake of the girl who has dreams just like I have, but while I am pursuing my dreams, her dreams are crushed by the narrow confines of a bigoted, unequal society.
All Replies (0)
The Biophysics Student admitted to Biology Departments at Harvard University
It is noticed that science develops in splashes, each significantly advancing our understanding of the Nature. The 19th century was the time of rapid development of thermodynamics and electrodynamics; in the beginning of the 20th century quantum mechanics and relativity theory were born. In the search for secrets of nature science has reached extremely high and low energies as well as large and small length scales. Still until recently we knew very little about one of the most complex on everyday’s length and energy scales systems – life. Now we are at the dawn of efflorescence in molecular biology, which provides an excellent basis for application of modern physics, biochemistry and computational techniques. Revelations of molecular structure become extremely crucial, as they provide insights into the way molecules work.

My interest in the role of biomolecular structure in information processing and signal transduction pathways in the cell has developed during the last two years, while I have been a student of Molecular Biophysics sub-department of MIPT. Processing of biological information plays a crucial role in the existence and development of biological systems and its infringement often leads to different kinds of diseases. The structure and, consequently, the function of the involved biomolecules is an important key to the understanding of these processes. To further study processing of biological information and methods of structure determination I joined the research group of Dr. X, focusing on the structure and function of membrane proteins, lipids and lipid-protein systems.

In September xxxx I started my research in the group of xx, Small City, Russia. I studied the properties of xxx under various conditions. Work there not only deepened my knowledge about crystallisation and lipid systems, but also gave me knowledge and experience of strengths and limitations of structure investigation by neutron scattering. I became familiar with the theoretical background of small angle neutron scattering, experimental setup and data treatment techniques.

In March xxxx I continued my research in the group of Dr. X at the Institute of XX. The ultimate goal of our research is to explain all stages of signal transduction during the chemo- and phototaxis. Currently I am involved in several projects on the structure and functioning of xxx, the specimen of microbial phototaxis system, in the complex with xxx as well as without it. My current task is to obtain crystals which xxx. During this work I acquired a broad range of experimental experience and theoretical background necessary for crystallisation and structure determination of membrane proteins. One of the most challenging tasks in my project was to find the best conditions for trapping intermediate states of xx in crystals. It was a combination of thorough theoretical analysis of spectral properties of the protein with further experimental examination and finally implementation of theoretical findings. As a result I obtained crystals of xxx which diffract to xx on a synchrotron.

Having succeeded in the current research, employing the knowledge from different fields of physics and biochemistry, I feel well prepared for the further challenging studies and research in the fields of molecular and structural biology, perhaps on very different topics, as well as on the topics I am familiar with. I regard structure investigations to be not only the method of obtaining a particular structure, but one from the collection of methods of life sciences which together advance our understanding of molecular mechanisms of life. Therefore I want to study a range of biophysical, biochemical and computational techniques that are used to reveal function of biomolecules and information processing by biological systems. Spectroscopy, quantum chemistry and computational structural biology techniques, like molecular dynamics and Brownian dynamics are of great interest to me as they are hand in hand with structure determination methods. Therefore multidisciplinary training program in Molecular, Cellular and Chemical Biology perfectly suits my scientific interests. Research in these areas is very active in Dr. X's, Dr. X’s, Dr. X’s, and Dr. X’s groups at XX University.

I want to continue my education at the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology of XX University. I am convinced that my participation in your Ph.D. program will give me thorough education and excellent research experience, which will advance me to my dream – discovering new secrets of Nature.
All Replies (0)
Undergraduate Degree at Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut
College/University: Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut
Degree: Undergraduate Degree

Personal statement- A Topic of my Choice

Squash- The Most Meaningful Extra-Curricular Activity That I Have Participated In

“Per Angusta, Ad Agusta”- Through perseverance greatness is achieved. It’s strange but my understanding of life has come from the game of “Squash”. It has totally changed my attitude towards everything. The impact of other activities that I have participated in have also played a very significant role in the molding of my personality but this game has just won me over.

I recall the first match I played. I entered the court taking a deep breath as the referee announced “two-all, fifth game”. As he called my name and asked me to serve I realized that this was it, this was the decider and my fate would be determined by the next game. I gave it my best shot all set to 2walk out as the winner. I was leading and was confident of my victory not realizing that the tables could turn any second. Before I knew it, the game was over, and I had lost! Something had gone wrong, whether it was lack of concentration and skill or was it over-confidence? I will never know. That was my first lesson in life.

Over the years Squash has made me realize that victory is elusive and once you get to the top you have to work extremely hard to maintain your position. I learned the hard way that things don’t always turn out the way we want them to. Practice improves accuracy and skill. Winning is not impossible but it is definitely not easy. A positive attitude along with a combination of determination, perseverance, desire, skill, and talent is what champions are made of. This game has had a tremendous impact on me. The arduous training schedules and the long hours spent on the game are often tedious but I never look at it as a burden on me as I enjoy every moment of it. I am truly passionate about the sport and I feel that winning a match or a tournament is not merely for the money or for the recognition only but it is merely for the love and satisfaction that a player gets while playing. Playing tournaments and traveling around the world has made me indefinitely more confident. I have learned the true value of sportsmanship and the art of getting along with my teammates. It has given me a lot of exposure along with opportunities to travel and play in different cities. It has made me understand the coach-student relationship and this has helped me understand the true meaning of the word “dedication”.

Even with my academics Squash has helped my concentration levels. The game has helped me believe that I am a winner in all walks of life and has helped me grow into an all rounder. I owe a lot to this game as every drop of sweat that trickles down my skin makes me believe that I am striving toward my goal and that I am getting closer to it day by day. It is by far the most significant activity that I have every participated in, and the TIGER instinct that I have developed balanced with a sporting spirit has helped me inculcate the fighting spirit which encourages me to tackle all of my difficulties in life with courage and determination looking at them like a game of Squash, one in which the ball has to be tackled with strength and conviction.

What inspires you to wake up in the morning and get on with your life?

When I ask myself what inspires me to wake up in the morning and get on with my life, the answer to that question sis “Life” itself. Some pessimistic people would say that it’s their loved ones buy I would say, that for me, it is “Life” itself. Sounds ironical but it is true. I wake up every morning to see what the new day will unfold. I have lived only one small portion of my life and I see and learn new things everyday. I always look forward to the new things I will learn and what the day will bring forth. Life for me is a learning curve and today I take life positively and manage to see the brighter picture even in a dark situation. Life is like an unwritten book, with each day a page and every year a chapter. I don’t know what the next day has in store for me, even though sometimes I wish I had a crystal ball that I could gaze into to guide me what to do next. One never knows if they are living the last day of their life. Accidents can occur anytime and there is nothing a person can do to prevent them from happening. Experiences teach you to take life as it comes- day by day and live life to the fullest.

My inquisitive mind wants to learn what life will teach me whether it’s good or bad. I am hungry for knowledge and experience. There are so many different kinds of people who I haven’t met, cultures, which I don’t even know about, and places that are nothing but a name to me. Everyday when I wake up in the morning I hope to learn at least one thing new. I do hope as life passes, I am exposed to a vast variety of things to make my life meaningful. I wouldn’t call myself ignorant but definitely someone who has seen only a little corner of her own life – when there are galaxies outside undiscovered. The important thing is that I am willing to take challenges and hope to do this by expanding my mind and look into new horizons hoping that I will be able to benefit as much as I can while the new day dawns over me.
All Replies (0)
The Computer Science Student
This application is very important for me because completion a PhD degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering is the best chance for a unifying my interest in information technologies and my natural inclination to mathematics. I am confident that when I become a serious and mature researcher my desire to make a contribution to science and to our understanding of this world will remain my main driving force.

It took a long time until personal computers became widely available in this country and until then my only single interest was mathematics. At the age of 14, during my school holidays, when my classmates had a rest, I willingly got up at about 7 in the morning and till the evening was absorbed by mathematics. At that time these were mostly Olympiad problems, but two years later, still being a High School student, I attended a course on inequalities in Kiev State University and conducted my first research work. Essentially it was a proof of Karamat inequality that utilized properties of convex functions and Murhead inequality. It was unforgettable, how main idea of my central proof dawned upon me. Although, relatively simple, it was something innovative, something that no one had ever done before with methods of elementary mathematics. That evening I went to sleep the happiest boy in the world. Later I refined the proof and being a freshman at the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology(MIPT) presented it at the 52nd MIPT Scientific Conference where it was honored the first prize.

In the third-year at MIPT I started working at the Institute of System Programming (ISP), which is a part of Russian Academy of Sciences. Lectures on computer science at the ISP expanded my knowledge in many important fields such as complexity of algorithms, parallel computing, compiler technology, software engineering and so on. Especially I enjoyed studying new Autonomous Adaptive Control (AAC) method under the guidance of Prof. X. The essence of the AAC method is in simultaneous solution of such problems as pattern recognition, knowledge obtaining, presentation and decision-making. During my work in the ISP I had rare opportunity to interact closely with scientists who stood at the origin of computer science in Russia: Prof. X, Dr. Y and Prof. Z.

In my fourth year I joined Moscow office of NetCracker Corp. that selected several students for training. NetCracker produces software for modeling, analysis and interpretation of complex telecommunication networks. My work in NetÑracker gave me solid practical knowledge of many technologies and concepts such as Java, Oracle, XML, Object-Oriented Design and Programming. But much more important is that the project required extensive knowledge of both mathematics and computer science. I personally wrote some modules to NetCracker where actively utilized graph theory, parallel computing and discrete mathematics. Moreover sometimes generalization of classical algorithms was required. For example, I extended Dejkstra algorithm to allow multiple search of optimal paths.

Along with my study of computer science I am involved in research activity in fundamental mathematics. Under supervision of Professor X I conducted research in convex analysis, wrote my thesis ”Integration of Multivalued Mappings“ and defended it with Honors. Essentially it consisted in a study of necessary and sufficient conditions under which there exists Riemann integral of multivalued maps. During this work I acquired a broad range of research experience and strong background necessary for further research. My current research work is devoted to differentiation of multivalued mappings and differential inclusions and is mostly concerned with nonconvex case. One of the most challenging tasks in the work is to obtain Pontryagin maximum principle in Hamiltonian form from Lagrange form (in terms of tangent cones).

My research topic is closely related with and often serves as a background to theory of optimal control and theory of decision making that are widely used in network optimization and graph algorithms - areas that are of great interest to me. Moreover my work on network performance in NetCracker adds up to this framework. Investigations in these fields, in discrete mathematics and in the theory of compilers are widespread at the department and it makes admission to your University particularly desirable. I have strongest incentive to advance as far as I can in this field and to discover something that has not been known before. I am certain that application to Carnegie Mellon is the best possible step to accomplish it and I would regard my admission not only as a great honor but also as a great responsibility and an obligation to work hard.
All Replies (0)
Undergraduate degree at Grinnel College
College/University: Grinnell College, Grinnell, IA
Degree: Undergraduate
Junior College Attended: Bishop Cotton Girls School, Bangalore
School Attended: Bishop Cotton Girls School, Bangalore

What inspires you to wake up in the morning and get on with your life?

I Can Make a Difference

Born and brought up in India, a country where nearly half the population is either illiterate, poverty-stricken or sick, I am thankful and grateful for the life of comparative luxury that I live. I never have to worry about where my next meal is coming from and I have always had a loving family and caring friends to take me through all of life’s difficulties.

Walking down a busy street in any city in India, is all it takes to realize how lucky I am to be able to sit at my study table, in my own room, in my own home, completely sheltered and protected from the world outside, writing an essay, hoping to be admitted in a college a million leagues across the sea. Almost half the children in my country cannot even dream of sitting in a classroom and it would be their wildest fantasy coming true if they were given the opportunity to step outside the borders of our country and see the world.

It is all this that inspires me to wake up every morning and get on with my life, no matter how hard it may seem at any stage. I want to make the best of every chance I get, so that someday I can help the miserable beggar who I see everyday on my way to school or perhaps the little child who sits outside my gate and watches me as I hope on to the school bus.

Living in a country where poverty, misery and pain is as commons as sunrise or sunset, ignorance is sometimes truly bliss. A lot of the luckier citizens of this country prefer to stay blind to all the pain around them. I am affected by the sight of every Indian who is not as fortunate as I am and I do not ever want to become immune to all the desperate cries for help that I see so often.

It is this overwhelming feeling of sympathy and concern that makes me want to make an effort to use all the opportunities I have to the best of my ability so that someday, in some way, I can make a difference.
All Replies (0)
MS in Mechnical Engineering
Admitted to Pennsylvania State University, University Park
As the fully assembled Santros (mid sized cars) manufactured by Hyundai Motors India Limited, rolled out of the assembly line, it gave me an ineffable sense of accomplishment, unlike anything I had ever felt before. Just two weeks previously, a sizeable number of the cars had been reported to violate Hood – Fender gap specifications and were being rejected by the final inspection line. But after my careful study consisting of about a fortnight of meticulous observations and painstaking statistical analysis, the problem, which had rankled the technicians for months, was solved. The countermeasure of correcting the alignment between latch mounting and the hood striker was simple, implementable, cost effective and most importantly successful in solving the problem.

This achievement was fruits of seeds sown very early in the childhood and born out of years of diligent nurturing. As a kid, I was very much amazed by the mechanical and electronic gadgets around me, and by the time I was 14, I had carefully disassembled watches, walkmans, stereos and any other object that I could lay my hands on. The sheer complexity of such devices and the simplicity of their building blocks-the circuits was an intriguing paradox that urged me to probe deeper into their functions and features. A testimony to this prodigious talent is the Young Scientist award (Silver Medal) that I won in Dr. Homi Bhabha Science competition and the National Talent Scholarship, a very prestigious scholarship given only to few throughout the nation.

The solid foundation I received in my formative years of schooling along with a mix of perseverance, intelligence, and will to succeed ensured my selection through the Joint
Entrance Examination (featuring among the top 0.5% out of 1,50,000 candidates) to get into the Indian Institute of Technology. Diligence and application made it possible for me to obtain a high Credit Grade Point Average (CGPA) of 9.08/10 (3.69/4.0). After 2 semesters of my undergraduate studies, I found my interest in Mechanical Engineering becoming more specific, which led me to choose ‘Vibrations and Acoustics’ as a minor field.

The first course that I did, ‘Vibration Concepts and Applications’, helped me grasp some basic fundamentals of this field, the second course, ‘Acoustics and Noise control’, introduced me to the results of vibration, sound propagation and effective noise control. The current course ‘Signal processing in Mechanical systems’ deals with filtering and sampling which is quintessential to any analysis of acoustic and vibration problem. An ample proof of my aptitude in this subject is the 2 ‘S’ grades (10/10) that I have obtained in the above courses.

My interest in this field led me to undertake new important research projects in my undergraduate years. Most important amongst them was “Crack detection in bonding of Solid rocket propellants and Inhibitor using Non Destructive Technology”, a project funded by Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). Ultrasonics gave success to some extent in showing shift in resonance frequency and change in bandwidth with impedance change, but was eventually abandoned in favor of microwaves, the hardware and infrastructure for which is still not completely available in the Institute. I have also been involved in the design and fabrication of a Linear Motion Guide system, which consisted of housing and driving the Lm system and also holding the object to be scanned. As a part of the course ‘Vibration concepts and Applications’, I presented a term paper in ‘Thermally induced vibrations in beams’. I have been particularly interested in application of acoustics & vibrations to monitoring of various manufacturing processes like tool wear, cutting force measurement involved in machining etc. I have read a lot of literature in the field of ‘Vibration & Acoustics’ from international journals and have a burning desire to carry out some productive research in this field. I feel Pennsylvania State University with its numerous laboratories and high quality of research guided by talented faculty members should help me in fulfilling these long cherished dreams.

The above research activities evince my interest in this field and demand a need to channelise it in the right direction to obtain something purposeful. My long-term goal in life is to contribute to the society by making groundbreaking research in the field of ‘Vibrations and Acoustics’ in the form of a resources faculty from the academic field or a highly qualified technician in a commercially research oriented center. An important stepping-stone towards this would be to attain a graduate degree from a top class university, which would empower me with an in-depth and exhaustive knowledge of the latest developments in this field. A graduate degree would offer me much more flexibility in terms of area of specialization, methodology of work and would be much more exciting as I would be carrying out research in a field, where my interests and skills lie. Though I have made a very good start with my undergraduate studies, I feel that I have just touched the tip of the proverbial iceberg and there is still a lot of more information waiting to be explored, gauged, appreciated and applied.

The high quality of research being carried at the Pennsylvania State University, along with the esteemed group of well-qualified faculty members would make studying in such an ambience really rewarding and enriching experience. The good infrastructure in the form of various laboratories and centers and a strong rapport with industries would develop my practical skills and hone them to meet the rigorous demands of career that lay ahead of me. Social interaction with a conglomeration of students would teach me invaluable lessons in life and stand in good stead in the future – because, leading a great life is far nobler than making a living. Given an opportunity to pursue graduate studies in the Pennsylvania State University, I pledge to toil hard to uphold the excellent tradition of research that is being carried out and strive to win laurels and accolades for the institution.
All Replies (0)


Disclaimer: Please note that the experiences presented are submitted by visitors to our website. Individuals’ experiences may vary, and you should interpret each individual’s experience at your own risk. Do not make a decision solely based on an experience posted here. We do not endorse any individuals’ experiences, and we are not liable or responsible for consequences stemming from your use of the information presented within any individual’s experience.