Politics Personal Statement
In the Oxford English Dictionary, politics is merely described as the science and art of government. I disagree; it is much more than that.
Politics applies to everything we do, it is innate and has been since long before any government existed. I agree that politics is an art and a science because winning the support of the electorate, for example, relies on the science of policy and the art of persuasion. I am drawn to politics because it constantly changes the world we live in, influencing us as individuals and as part of society.
I am fascinated by power relationships within government and the increasing dominance of the British Prime Minister, for example comparing the premierships of Tony Blair and Margaret Thatcher to the more 'primus inter pares' approach of John Major.
I am intrigued by human rights issues and debates, such as on prisoners' enfranchisement in the UK.
I am also interested in ideologies because of their effects on political systems and leaders in both politically volatile and stable countries, such as Russia and Britain. International relations have become increasingly fascinating to me, particularly the influence of bodies such as the UN and the EU, how they work together to develop policy and to resolve conflict, as in Libya, because they are always topical.
A general interest in politics has led to further personal research and involvement. I regularly take part in YouGov surveys; in doing so I feel I gain an insight into the zeitgeist of the British public. I have developed an admiration for political activists and writers.
Aung San Suu Kyi's fight for democracy in Myanmar inspires me because I share her belief that people deserve basic rights, and that communication, not violence, is the best way to secure peace. I enjoy political works such as Anthony Sampson's 'Who Runs This Place?' which provided great insight into the political and financial power of the ruling classes.
I enjoy current affairs and try to include topical issues or extracts in my essays, to update the subject matter, and make them more distinctive.
During a week's work experience with Bell Pottinger, the UK's leading PR group run by Thatcher's former PR guru Lord Bell, I developed skills that apply not only to public relations but to politics also, and gained advice from people who are involved with politicians, civil servants and the public on a daily basis.
I played an active role in meetings, offering my opinions and advice. This experience has improved my performance in class discussion because I have learnt to challenge my own opinion as well as others. Politics is about ideas and policy but it is also about how you put those ideas across in a way that appeals to people, therefore I feel my work experience in public relations was highly relevant to the study of politics.
This year I taught at a local primary school. I found this rewarding, as I believe influencing young minds in school is similar to how politicians influence voters. I have taken part in debating at school, improving my ability to form coherent arguments and increasing my confidence in public speaking.
My studies in French, English Literature, and Politics have been challenging but over the course I have seen how many connections there are to studying Politics at degree level.
When not in school, I compete regularly on my horse in one day events: a combination of dressage, show jumping and cross-country. This requires athleticism, determination and a high degree of skill, and I enjoy the challenge of something outside the classroom.
At university, I do not just want to study politics, I want to challenge it, immerse myself in it and change it. Politics combined with an active role in university life, will prepare me for adult life and my future career. Your course offers me the perfect scope to develop my passion.
I hope this helps anyone looking to do politics at uni!