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Politics and International Relations Personal Statement

The era in which we live goes through constant turmoil and shifting powers. Not a day goes by without a change somewhere on our planet, which in turn has an effect on yet another change to come elsewhere. A good example of this is the Arab Spring which is still ongoing. In one country the government is overthrown, whereas the neighbouring country sees only minor protests.

This is a big contrast and raises certain questions: what is the motivation for not undertaking any radical action? Why do citizens in a neighbouring country not respond in the same manner?

In my history class I was always fascinated by how governments can be overthrown and how control was taken by another group. Especially if this was done through a revolution, driven by some sort of ideal.

Nevertheless, my interest in politics was really ignited when I took the subject Social Sciences. Where do I, as a citizen, stand in relation to the government and how can I voice my opinion when I am not content with the government's decision making? This is also valid on a much smaller scale and therefore I joined our school's Student Council.

As representatives of the student body we try to solve problems for students, by talking to the different parties involved. For example; to create a quiet learning environment during the renovation of our school building we had to negotiate with the headmaster of the school.

To find out whether this interest I have had in politics for several years was genuine, I took a 4-week online course International Relations & International Organisations at the university of Groningen. Quite soon after I started with this course, I knew for certain that this is what I want to study.

The focus of the course was on the workings of the European Union and the causes of wars. To keep up with current affairs I watch the news and regularly read newspapers. I find this to be of importance, because everything changes continuously. This is the beauty of politics: it never stops being relevant.

In my spare time I like to keep myself busy with literature; whether it is reading a novel or writing a poem. I always carry a small notebook with me in case inspiration for a new poem hits me. In addition to that I ride horse and dance (a mix of hiphop and modern).

Ever since I was a small child my parents made the conscious decision to visit a different country every holiday. As a result of that I have so far seen how people live and think in more than twenty countries in several parts of the world.

This upbringing has played an important role in how I view the world around me today. The latter is one of the reasons for my wanderlust; the knowledge and understanding you can gain from seeing all the corners of the world is what interests me most. This is also my ambition to study in a country that is not my own.

I am always looking for new challenges, which is why I chose to do bilingual VWO. As my school is (quite) internationally orientated I got the opportunity to stay for a week with a host family in York in 2011 and one year later a week in Znojmo in the Czech Republic.

Yet another year later I lived and worked as a trainee in Grand Baie, Mauritius for three weeks. From these invaluable experiences I learned how to communicate with people who come from different cultures and that they can think quite differently about certain matters than I do.

This has broadened my view a lot and also my understanding of how the world turns. I believe that this study will give me a better understanding of the world of politics. My vision of the future has yet to develop, but I can see myself finding my destiny anywhere from contributing to a think tank to working at an embassy.

Studying at degree level has always been my aspiration and it would be a privilege if I could contribute to your university as an active and enthusiastic student. I look forward to developing myself in order to become a participant in the maze that is politics.

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This personal statement was written by PerlaMeltem for application in 2014.

PerlaMeltem's university choices
The University of Manchester
The University of York
The University of Edinburgh
University of Bath
Cambridge University

Green: offer made
Red: no offer made

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