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Sample SOP:倫敦政經學院/美國南加大(LSE/ USC)
2010/10/15 07:23
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又到了申請學校的季節,相信很多人對於SOP一定是一個頭兩個大,或者根本不想面對,拿準備TOEFL/IELTS、GRE/GMAT當藉口,能拖就拖,時間也一點一點消逝。

要知道,好的SOP就像精緻的日本料理一樣,慢工細活,才能料好實在。如果狼吞虎嚥急就章,就會給教授一種「花大錢卻吃到便宜貨」的感覺,我想無論是誰,都只有「杜濫」兩個字吧!(國外的教授可是很認真審閱每位申請者的Personal Statement,所以千萬別輕忽它的重要性。)

知恩圖報,昔日受人點滴,今當湧泉以報,希望這份力量能生生不息,持續下去。附上當初申請英國倫敦政經學院和美國南加大"Global Media & Communications"雙聯學位的SOP供各位參考,應該對不知從何下筆的你會有些幫助。

最後還是要強調,SOP的功用,在於凸顯和推銷自己。要知道,個人特色絕非只靠一味複製他人成功的模式就能實現,而是經過縝密的思考,確實了解自己的特質後,再將這樣的特質與目標學校、科系做好連結,相信必能事半功倍,金榜題名。

祝大家都能錄取自己心目中的第一志願!

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I am applying for the MSc in Global Media and Communication in the LSE/USC programme with the view of establishing myself in a career as a product manager serving in the marketing and sales promotion section of a multinational corporation, in particular a corporation that brings together ideas from various world cultures. In the short term, I plan to develop my insights into American, British, and Japanese cultures through your programme as well as through working-holiday opportunities provided by the Japanese government, which I intend to pursue in conjunction with my graduate studies. In the long term, I aspire to maximise this multicultural experience, along with the communications expertise that I develop, so that as a future product manager I will be able to provide my customers with positive and effective brand images and sales records encompassing the Greater China area and onto the global market.

My career goals came together when I was working as an intern at ASUS, the Taiwan-based computer maker, where I had the opportunity to participate in the planning of the Eee PC international product launch in Taipei. During this project, I not only acquired strategic marketing skills, but learnt the prominence and impact of how a product could change a corporation. ASUS, long recognised as an international manufacturer base, has suffered greatly when trying to establish its own brand due to the lack of a big local market. Moreover, with the advent of globalisation, it has faced much more competition—especially from China—in that it is much cheaper to employ labour in the developing countries. Thus, a product with its own brand seems to be the proper way not merely for ASUS, but for any company in Taiwan because Taiwan is in the proximity of the world’s most potential market, China, and prides itself in being a confluence of a variety of cultures, those of the U.S., Japan, the EU., and China in particular, all places where the Eee PC has achieved an overwhelming success and transformed itself into an international brand. 

In addition, by conducting for ASUS store-to-store market research and drafting holistic market analyses, I became aware that pricing policy and market share are two indispensable factors in establishing a brand. Also, from my sales experience with ASUS notebooks and LCD TVs at the Taipei 3C Products Fair to the handling of clients’ complaints, I came to the understanding that an readily-accessible place and comprehensive after-sales service are also instrumental in building a brand image. That is, the so-called 4P1S that is so often talked about in the marketing field are indeed the foundations of brand development. Yet, the Eee PC experience tells me that a highly resonant marketing communication campaign can facilitate communication between the public and the corporation, further maximising the potential of a product, and eventually earning customer recognition.
 
Apart from the business experience gained from the ASUS internship, I also developed while in college some fundamental media knowledge via several courses, including Mass Communication Theory, Writing for Journalism, and most importantly, a News English course in which I did a project that involved comparing the coverage of several major media organisations, both domestic and international, of the 2008 Taiwan presidential election; in this project, I also discussed the individual strengths, weaknesses, and limitations of the existing media categories and their respective influences on the contents of the news coverage. This understanding of the distinctive qualities possessed by these categories, I believe, will benefit any media strategies I develop in the future dealing with the placement of marketing contents.

Also in college, I took part in a one-year programme called U Seeds, sponsored by a leading newspaper in Taiwan—the United Daily News—in which I gained hands-on experience and working knowledge in the media industry. Additionally, the experience I had covering news, both independently and in cooperation with more than 20 journalists, not only built up my adaptable interpersonal and real-world reporting skills, but taught me to think from the position of the news reporter—something that will be valuable in the future when I am managing media relations.
 
To further my media knowledge and cultural insights to the next level, I am determined to pursue a postgraduate degree in global media and communication at an international university. Your department has an enduring reputation in media and communications studies, especially from political and socio-economic perspectives. I am extremely excited about studying in two of the most important media capitals of the globe. I believe that the optimal locations of both London and Los Angeles will give me exposure to people of diverse nationalities and access to multinational corporations. I plan to fully immerse myself in a comprehensive theoretical grounding during my first year at LSE, and then put into practice what I have learnt when I undertake the USC internship, hoping to narrow as much as possible the gap between theory and practice.

As for the particular courses provided in the LSE/USC programme, the one on Global Media Industries will I am sure equip me with knowledge of the outlook of contemporary media industries, of the challenging issues facing organisations, and of future developments in this ever-changing business. The course International Marketing: A Strategic Approach is one that will prepare me to adopt international marketing policies from a more advanced perspective. And Multiculturalism, Nationalism, and Citizenship will further enable me to take into consideration local and cultural discrepancies when putting into practice global strategies. Besides, I also look forward to the opportunity to study under Professor Terhi Rantanen and Processor Lilie Chouliaraki. Their leading research groups of Global Media and Corporate Communication are yet another driving forces behind my desire to enter your department.

Since I am from a country where a variety of world cultures, such as those of the U.S., China, Japan, South Korea, Europe as well as South Asia, coexist and blend together peacefully, I am confident that I can provide a perspective in your programme that will be distinctive from other students from the rest of the world. Meanwhile, my multilingual ability to speak, besides English, Chinese and Japanese will enable me to research and analyse a wide range of first-hand materials more deeply and thus to bring new ideas being written in these languages into the classroom. Moreover, having participated in a broad range of communication experiences and promotion activities, including in education, news publication, and the computer industry, as well as in the military, I strongly believe that my contribution to academic discussions will be considerable, of the highest quality, and even at times, I hope, enlightening. Last but not least, I hope that my great enthusiasm for this field will support me against any hardships during my studies and after graduation, and will assist me as well in becoming a top product manager in the future.

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