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I work very hard on each statement that I produce because  I trust you as well to recommend me to your friends and colleagues if you are very pleased with your statement. 

MPH Neuroscience, Women’s Studies, Latina

Throughout my life I have been recognized many times for having a calming presence. I didn’t realize how much of a positive trait that was until I started and ran my own community service organization in high school. It wasn’t easy, especially for a fairly shy teenager, but I was passionate about helping others. I managed dozens of events, we raised $3000 for World Vision, and the club ended up contributing thousands of hours of community service. I learned a lot about responsibility, leadership, accountability and organization. What made it especially fulfilling was how much it forced me out of my comfort zone.  It also taught me that one must go into public service with the right mindset.  Not everyone wants help or will be grateful. Big dreams take a lot of work, patience, and calm. The work itself has to be fulfilling because the ideal results don’t always happen. Now that I know I won’t crumble under the pressure, I want to pursue a career that allows me to keep striving for helping others no matter what.

I want to work in Public Health because it incorporates my strengths, interests, and career goals. The Master’s Degree Program in Public Health at the University of XXXX is my first choice for graduate school primarily because it will equip me with the tools to maximize my contribution to society. During my senior year of college, while working as a research assistant in neuroscience, I became fully convinced that Public Health would be my calling. I am proud of the fact that I was able to graduate with a 3.9 GPA in my major, despite working all the way through school 20-30 hours a week. 

Since finishing my undergraduate studies in Psychology with minors in Neuroscience and Women’s Studies at XXXX six years ago, I have grown and matured enormously both personally and professionally. Now, at 28, I feel strongly that I have the wisdom and experience to excel in your MPH Program at XXXX. The progress that I have made over this period is reflected in my GRE scores. On my first attempt in my senior year of college, I scored only a 48 and 53 percentile ranking on the quantitative and verbal sections. Recently, however, I retook the GRE and scored in the 79 and 94 percentile, respectively.

Following graduation, I have continued to take classes, approximately 40 hours of additional courses including Statistics, Biochemistry, Computer Programming and others to insure greater success and preparation for your program. My intense enthusiasm for Public Health and closely related areas is reflected by the fact that my professor for my Introduction to Social Work course, Professor XXXX, took the time to recommend me to your program. While taking her class, I volunteered to help out with two different Public Health projects. First, I volunteered at a WIC clinic in Baytown, Texas. Though I mostly helped with clerical work, I was also able to follow and observe meetings with clients. I also volunteered with the Harris Country Mobile Health Unit administering flu shots.  I helped people fill out the forms, provided them with additional resources after their inoculations, and in what I found to be most rewarding, I assured them that they were safe and secure in our care.  I was really inspired by this work, and especially by the caring and patient people who do it.  There was nothing glamourous about it, and it was a lot of hard work, but I felt proud to be involved.

Many of my undergraduate courses were closely related to public health. Scientific and Technical Writing taught me how to write objectively and put together scientific papers correctly. In my senior Biology Regulatory and Behavioral Neuroscience lab I conducted my own experiment, resulting in a full scientific paper on conditioning and perceived pain response in crawfish.  While it was not published, I have included it as a writing sample to show my understanding of the scientific experimentation process. In addition, my Statistics for Psychology course taught me how to conduct scientific studies before analyzing and reporting results using statistics. In addition, I took a Human Nutrition science class which helped me to more fully understand the relationship between nutrition and health. Finally, my Psychology of Women class shaped my worldview and spurred my interest in community health and social causes, as well as the complex ways in which gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic location can influence health care, especially mental health care.

At XXXXI also had the opportunity to work alongside Dr. XXXX who has also been so good as to provide me with a reference. While working as his research assistant, I learned a great deal about how to develop experiments and implement analytical processes. I was in charge of arranging appointments, running the daily experiments, and transcribing and processing data using SRSS software for statistical analysis.  I also ran interview-style tests on older adults in a study of age and memory in addition to utilizing a confocal microscope to analyze lesions in rat brain slides as part of our study of age-related cognitive decline.  After one test, one of the subjects even told me that although she was initially nervous about taking part in the study, she felt better thanks to my calming presence.

While at first I also strongly considered community health, I have decided that epidemiology is the track that I wish to pursue as a graduate student in Public Health due to my passion for studying chronic health issues. My father has had diabetes for the last half of his life; my sister has a chronic thyroid condition and I was diagnosed with severe rheumatoid arthritis at the age of 20. Fortunately, my condition is now in medically-induced remission, but it will be with me for the rest of my life. The area that interests me the most is Type II diabetes, not only as a result of my father’s condition but also the fact that this is a public health crisis that is expected to worsen in coming decades. Given my interest in epidemiology, it would be a special honor to study under Drs. XXXX and XXXX since both are highly distinguished in the genetic epidemiology of chronic illnesses, especially Type II diabetes, the area of my own greatest special interest and experience. XXXX will provide me with the most comprehensive and thoroughgoing public health education possible for me to attain at a world-renowned program.

Public Health in Texas is bilingual and for this reason I have worked very hard for several years now on my Spanish and I continue to make progress. While I cannot yet claim to be fluent, I invest a lot of time in my second language and am confident that I will achieve fluency by the time I complete your program. While waiting to begin at XXXX, I will be improving my Spanish and continuing to volunteer with XXXX County Public Health, gaining additional hands-on experience directly related to epidemiology.  While my central goal is to work in the public sector with an organization like the CDC, National Institute of Health, or a local public health department, the most important goal is to make sure all people, regardless of language, will see me as a calming presence.

Thank you for consideration of my application to the MPH Program at XXXX.


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