International Relations Personal Statement
Having been born into a family from Holland, Poland, Germany, Russia and England, grown up hearing stories of my Polish grandfather’s arrival in England as a skin and bone man in the 40s I am enthusiastic to study International as I am eager to learn about events which will shape the lives of my descendants. Fascinated by the rise of terrorism and how the past affects the modern world, I am keen to apply my current studies to topics in which I am passionate. Through IR, I hope to pursue a career either in the development of foreign policy or as part of the voluntary sector as I feel this pathway will allow me to contribute most effectively to worldwide society.
A memorable experience is of my first protest against injustice. This set the tone for my enthusiasm in analysing and changing the world around me. Having developed a rounded view of global issues through studying world leaders (America, Russia and China), I possess a firm contextual grounding in which to study IR allowing me to perceive the significance of past and current events. Political dramas of 2016-17 led me to become engrossed in both internal and foreign affairs. Brexit heightened my interest in international institutions such as the EU and UN. their roles in lives of citizens and influence upon the world stage showing my diIigence and focus as a student. I would be excited to dedicate more time to researching the composition, powers and significance of such bodies. The snap election determined me to study politics and world affairs as it made me curious to research composition of Government and political theories, their implications and their varying degrees of success. I particularly enjoyed researching the application of theory to real life scenarios and the resultant compromises and am interested in further developing my political literacy. This provides a broad understanding of internal affairs; when applied to international relations this would ensure a clear understanding of the causes of political events and would allow for insight into the future of the world stage.
This February I travelled to Berlin to learn more about the Nazi regime. Alongside the Reichstag I visited many historic landmarks; this combined with my studies of Nazi Germany left me in awe of how the future of the world hinged upon a single man. This particular journey illuminated the role of many nations in the causes of WW2 and made me consider the validity and reliability of sources. Seeing both modern and 20th century Berlin introduced me to the concept of constructivism which I hope to apply to contemporary events. I balance academic demands with activities such as voluntary work and a part-time job; I spend 3 hours weekly coaching gymnastics and skiing and often fundraise for local sports clubs and my school. This enhanced my leadership skills through the need for careful planning, problem-solving and communication. I also enjoy extra-curricular activities such as the Aberdeenshire Mock Trial in which I received commendation for undertaking 4 times the standard workload. This involved great commitment as I was responsible for the organisation and motivation of my team and competed against older, more experienced students. My abilities to write and debate in a formal, legal setting were enhanced in this high pressure and competitive environment. I am an active and trusted member of the school community. For example, I have given tours to school visitors, been selected to interview prospective rectors and was the editor of the school newsletter. I hold a number of elected positions such student and community councils demonstrating my interpersonal skills and commitment to ensuring a better future for my peers through careful discussion and action which I hope to apply to wider society upon completing my studies in international relations.
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I am hoping to apply to uni through the clearances this year so I'm only writing my statement now. I'm not keen on the first 4 lines and am working to rephrase or change it completely. Thinking about swapping paragraphs 2/3 around and rewording paragraph 3 because I use "I" too much and I think it sounds slightly too clunkly because I'm trying to put across a lot in few words.
Any feedback would be greatly appreciated :)
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