Politics Personal Statement
“We'd all like to vote for the best man, but he's never a candidate” - Frank McKinney "Kin" Hubbard. A seemingly widespread feeling of distrust among the populous towards the people in the positions of greatest power has driven my inquisitive nature to understand the operations of government. A desire to discover the intricacies behind the guarded nature of much of government's work has pushed me in my interest of the mechanisms of the various institutions in power. In relation to this, my study of politics at AS level has opened my eyes to the intriguing developments in domestic and world current affairs. In American politics especially, it is interesting to examine such fundamental differences in campaigning and political involvement; it is fortunate that I am able to experience an election first-hand and I follow the developments with interest. I attended a political conference in 2007 where I heard political opinions from MPs Lembit Opik and George Galloway among others, giving a fascinating insight into their political ideology.
Another area of politics which interests me much is the various theories of voting behaviour, in both the UK and the US, fuelling an interest in a more sociological aspect of politics. With the partisan dealignment that is being witnessed in the UK, and the increasingly presidential nature of general elections, there is heated debated as to the most influential of factors causing people to vote the way they do. In furthering this curiosity, I am currently reading Drew Weston's “The Political Brain”, which delves deeper into factors affecting voting behaviour and offering the Democrats an alternative (and convincingly more successful) approach to their political tactics. The differences in political cultures become clear, and I find it intriguing to examine the venerated status that the constitution has among Americans. Michael Moore's “Bowling for Columbine” provided an insightful exposure of American's opinions on gun rights.
My study of History at GCSE and A-level has helped me in developing skills not only relevant to political studies, but also specific political circumstances. In particular I have been given a firm grounding in the origins of the British political system and political parties through our Representation and Democracy course. My AS levels in English and Critical Thinking have helped to develop my analytical skills, whilst my A level in French (where I was in the top ten results nationwide for GCSE and AS) gives me a different way of approaching learning. My commitment to a subject is shown by the fact I undertook a week's work experience in Grenoble in the summer of 2008.
The extra-curricular aspect of university life is an opportunity not to be wasted, and I have recognised this within secondary school. I have represented the school at rugby and basketball, and taken part in numerous inter-house debating competitions. I have also judged a year 7 poetry competition and received the senior award for business studies, demonstrating my committed and industrious nature. My time spent as a prefect shows my ability to take on responsibility and fulfil my tasks punctually and effectively.
I have been a member of a local football team for 3 years, helping to improve my teamwork and interpersonal skills. These have also been furthered by my last year working at Next Retail, as well as giving me a better understanding of the importance of good relationships in a professional capacity and the responsibilities in the workplace. I also undertook a two week work placement at Eversheds LLP working in the employment department, where I witnessed the workings at an employment tribunal. This experience gave me important information towards the work of solicitor.
I believe that my driving passion for politics in combination with my enthusiasm to learn will enable me to be a successful student of political or sociological subjects.
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