I'm on the verge of adulthood, womanhood, self-discovery, creativity, and sometimes a whole lot of emotions! Feel free to follow my journey!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Grad School Personal Statement - 1st Draft

Oh, the personal statement. As someone who loves to write blog posts and read other peoples opinions, this is still an incredibly daunting task. To apply to grad school, I need to write the following personal statement:

  • Your written personal statement should be 900 - 1500 words in length. Please use narrative form and address the following questions:
  • - In reflecting upon your personal and professional history, what forces have influenced your professional growth and contributed to your decision to seek admission to this Lesley University program?
  • What are your long-term professional goals (ie. new directions, opportunities, interests, skills, professional renewal, and/or work advancement), and how does this Lesley University program help you to meet them?
  • Is there any other information you think would help the Admissions Committee to understand you better (ie special interests, publications, academic achievements, supervisors' references, unusual career path, awards and/or honors, special accomplishments, leadership abilities)?
Can't I just say - "Please oh please oh please accept me into your school I need to go hereeeeee!!!"? This school is one of the main reasons I moved to MA - I'm the grad school version of Felicity following a guy she hardly knows to college! So I've been writing all afternoon and here's what I have so far. It need 400-100 more words, and a lot of tweaking, but here goes:

I believe that music connects people, brings us closer to our own humanity. One of my favorite quotes is "when words fail, music speaks." Choosing to work towards a degree in music therapy has been a journey of finding a way of combing my passion for music, mental health and gender studies as well as my own personal experiences in a way that can help others.
Music spoke to me at some of the lowest points of my life - specifically, my battle with mental health illnesses. In high school I was anorexic and bulimic for a period of 2 years. I believe that this was a reaction to my undiagnosed low-grade depression, which has been following me since middle school. In early 2009 I began counseling at the *my college* Office for Counseling and Wellness. Throughout the next two years I began regular counseling and medication to treat my anxiety/depression. I have tried to give back to the center in small ways such as volunteering for the NY State College Counselors Convention in Summer 2011. 
Through my battle with depression I began to look for ways that I could help others through music. It has been a secret dream of mine for many years to create a  vocal program for those struggling with eating disorders. I would like to offer private and group lessons and run a chorus where young women and men with eating disorders can gain body confidence through music, singing and the body awareness that comes through vocal technique and exploration.
*Grad school* rises head and shoulders above any other music therapy programs I have researched. The more I learn about the program through the website, meeting with current students, and going to tours and info sessions, the more I believe that I can thrive and grow both personally and professionally in this environment. Lesley's program is actually one of the reasons I moved to Massachusetts upon graduation. I am particularly impressed with the internship requirements needed to obtain a master's degree in music therapy.
Since graduating from *my college* in December 2011 and moving to Massachusetts in January 2012 I have worked multiple jobs to make ends meet and gain experience. I am a kindergarten teacher at an after care program and a substitute teacher at an infant to preschool childcare center.I absolutely love working with children, especially young children and bringing music into their day.  I am hoping to start teaching voice lessons out of my house in the fall - teaching young singers to explore their voices in a healthy, safe, positive way. I find that on the smallest level, singing "The Wheels on the Bus" can help a child who is upset or scared or missing their parents. I know that I will always find a way to bring music to children and I believe that music therapy can help me make a positive impact in my community.

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