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Statement of Purpose Biology, Malaysian Applicant

I grew up in a poor family in Malaysia and attended schools which were inadequately staffed and equipped by western standards. However, I applied myself with exceptional determination and diligence to enable me to pursue undergraduate studies. I was ranked first in my class and was awarded a distinction in the Malaysian Unified Examination Certificate. Consequently many career paths were open to me but my love of science coupled with an intention to do something useful with my life, fired an interest in multidisciplinary studies including pharmacy. I was delighted to gain entrance to the International Medical University where I earned a Bachelor degree in Pharmaceutical Chemistry and graduated in 2013. I now hope to advance my career by earning my Master's Degree in Biology in the USA. My first choice is XXXX University because of the sheer excellence of your program and the vast intellectual and professional resources of the surrounding area.

The success achieved at school, in the face of unsatisfactory educational provision, was gained only because of the fact that I possessed high degrees of natural inquisitiveness, diligence and determination. All of which characteristics are called for in successful research. I am aware that successful research calls for other, uncommon, characteristics such as the ability to set clear goals, approach problems with originality and creativity and I believe that I have demonstrated such traits in my academic and professional careers to date.  During my undergraduate studies, I completed an honors capstone project which introduced me to a multi-disciplinary approach to problem solving. The project involved aspects of Biochemistry, Biomaterial Gastroenterology, Nephrology, Molecular Biology as well as Physics together with Basic Computer Programming and Engineering to analyze the data. This project also provided me with lab protocols for cell growth, transfection, polymerase chain reaction, electrophoresis and fluorescence. I believe that this will assist me in the transition into Oral Biology Sciences and will be enabled to apply these experiences to future research.

My undergraduate research experience inspired a passion for research which I am very keen to pursue as a career. My supervisor was a highly experienced and devoted researcher, Dr. XXXX, who taught me much about how effective research is initiated and conducted.

Since graduating, I have specifically sought exposure to research and related fields such as quality control and management, validation, compliance and review that would provide a basis for future research work. I believe that my direct research experience and my professional background will enable me to ‘add value’ to the program from an early stage and enable me, ultimately, to become a first class researcher in a field in which I am passionate. My professional experience has also provided many opportunities to hone the kind of concise and accurate written and verbal communication and recording skills that is essential in a good researcher.

I am especially intrigued by the bone remodelling research, particularly the study of heparin sulfate complexes at Dr. XXXX’s lab at the Oral Biology Department. However, I am also willing to explore  different areas by applying the fruits of my background in pharmacy, biology, chemistry and computer science. If my application is accepted, I would seek to significantly broaden my skills and create a professional network for the future. I would also like to publish my work to allow a wide field of interpretation by other scientists, as well as to open up potential research opportunities that may have overlooked. Furthermore, I would like to make original and significant contribution to research lab and the Department of Oral Biology by performing quality research. Upon graduation, I would like to be involved in academia, while continuing to conduct research and nurturing the future research generations.

As an undergraduate at an international school, I had the opportunity to work and socialize with people of many social and ethnic backgrounds. I am an outgoing person and so volunteered to work as an ‘ambassador’ to assist foreign students which was interesting, instructive and enjoyable. This contact also improved my language skills. Malay is my native language and I am proficient in English, Cantonese and Mandarin. I have travelled extensively in East Asia. I look forward to extending my knowledge of other cultures and sharing knowledge of my own rich heritage during the program.

The interdisciplinary graduate program at XXXX is an excellent ‘fit’ for my purposes. I am aware that the program provides excellent research facilities, a prestigious faculty and solid funding and several of the courses and electives coincide with my own special interests. I am aware that the program provides the kind of highly challenging but supportive academic environment in which I can thrive. I promise the reader that I shall apply myself with exceptional diligence and enthusiasm to ‘add value’ to the program and to enable me to achieve my goals.

To summarize: I believe that I possess, and have demonstrated, the characteristics of an excellent researcher; I have professional experience that is highly relevant to successful research; my background in pharmacy will enable me to provide original insights. However, my main recommendation is a genuinely passionate desire to undertake research in a field of such importance for so many and to assist in improving the lives of many and, indeed, in saving lives.

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