Dear All,

I need to send a motivation letter to apply to a scholarship for a PhD, which is presented below. I would appreciate if you could help me with this by perusing it for me and giving me your opinion.

Many thanks in advance.

By the way, thanks and congratulations for this forum.

Regards,

Joana

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I am writing to apply for the Fulbright Grant for Doctoral Study in Environmental Studies/Sustainable Development in the US for the academic Year 2007/2008.

I graduated in Environmental Engineering in 1999 from XXXX University, Spain. During my studies I became very interested in sustainable development, its principles and associated tools that allow the evaluation of potential risks and their prevention.

In the context of sustainability, during my final year, I worked directly with a local authority (Xxxxx Council, Spain) to develop its “Sustainable Observatory” based on a set of indicators which covered environmental, social and economic areas. The “Observatory” proved to be a very important tool for their Local Agenda XXI, helping the decision makers to evaluate their local development plans, strategies and policies.

Once I completed my degree, I focused my professional career on the development of quality and environmental management systems in companies related to the construction industry. As I have always been involved with this particular industry, I became aware of the bivalency between “environment and built environment” and became conscious that construction has the potential to cause severe impacts on the environment but on the other hand, it has the ability to enhance environmental health, biodiversity and quality of life when applying the appropriate approaches and tools.

Between 199X and 200X, I worked in Spain as a consultant and developed quality and environmental management systems according to ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 standards in ready mixed concrete and quarrying companies.

In 200X, I went to England, where I currently live, to do a Masters Degree in Quality Engineering at South Bank University. When developing my Masters´ dissertation, I applied my research skills in a real case study in a company manufacturing a very well-known ready mixed brand within United Kingdom. It was a real challenge and a very interesting experience for me, which convinced me to stay here to reinforce my international experience in the construction industry.

Since 200X, I have been living in Birmingham working as a QE (Quality and Environmental) Manager in an Engineering Consultancy Company. Its main clients are local authorities and its services include: design and maintenance of highways; design, maintenance and inspection of highways structures; and development of regeneration projects.

Dealing with this type of clients/entities and projects, I have realised how important all the parties are (from planers and local authorities to designers and contractors) in terms of making sustainability happen and how difficult it is due to the lack of appropriate or available tools and factual data. This has reinforced my interest in this topic, to which I intend to contribute and get involved as a researcher. Hence, I intend to develop a PhD thesis related to issues of sustainability and associated tools/practical techniques which may enhance the capacity of policy-makers, managers, planners, public authorities and enterprises to identify from a range of options, the most effective in promoting and achieving the level of sustainability suited to their own circumstances, maximising the benefits in economic, social and environmental terms.

There is no doubt that American Universities and their outstanding researchers have proven to lead sustainable development studies, giving unique contributions to the environmental risk management, urban planning and sustainable growth to the entire academic world. They have also had the ability to establish impressive links with other relevant actors such as technical professional associations, private sector, regional institutions and civil society, putting sustainable development concepts into practice. For these reasons, I would like to have the opportunity to develop my PhD in this incredible country, where along with opportunities for my intellectual and professional growth I would have the possibility to meet and work with people of the host country and those from other places of the world, sharing professional and hopefully creative insights.

Hence, having the Fulbright Grant, I would be given the possibility to research with the best academic institutions of the world and reinforce my knowledge in environment, built environment and associated planning and risk management tools necessary to achieve a sustainable development. I would then be able to use that knowledge on the companies and projects for which I am and I will work for, influence their decision making and hopefully contribute to the sustainable development of the world where all of us live!
Anon, here are some suggestions for your letter, shown in bold, - Nick

I am writing to apply for the Fulbright Grant for a Doctoral Study in Environmental Studies/Sustainable Development in the for the academic Year 2007/2008.

I graduated in Environmental Engineering in 1999 from *** . During my studies I became very interested in sustainable development, its principles and associated tools and how these allow for the evaluation of potential risks and their prevention.

In the context of sustainability, during my final year, I worked directly with a local authority (*** ) to develop its “Sustainable Observatory” [explain what this was]based on a set of indicators which covered environmental, social and economic areas. The “Observatory” proved to be a very important tool for their Local Agenda ***, helping [the deleted]decision makers to evaluate their local development plans, strategies and policies.

After completing my degree, I focused my professional career on the development of quality and on environmental management systems in companies related to the construction industry. As I have always been involved with this particular industry, I became aware of the [bivalency – incorrect word. connection? between [“environment and built environment” – is this a technical term? It doesn’t seem to make sense] and became aware that construction has the potential to cause a severe impact on the environment, while on the other hand, having the capability to enhance environmental health, biodiversity and quality of life if the appropriate approach is taken.

Between 199X and 200X, I worked in Spain as a consultant to quarrying companies and developed quality and environmental management systems according to ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 standards in ready mixed concrete.

In 200X, I took a Masters Degree in Quality Engineering at , . When developing my Masters´ dissertation, I applied my research skills in a real case study in a company manufacturing a very well-known ready mixed brand in the . This was a real challenge and a very interesting experience for me, which convinced me to stay in to reinforce my international experience in the construction industry.

Since 200X, I have been working in as a QE (Quality and Environmental) Manager in an Engineering Consultancy [deleteCompany]. Its main clients are local authorities and its services include: design and maintenance of highways; design, maintenance and inspection of highway structures; and the development of regeneration projects.

Dealing with these types of projects, I have realised how important all the parties are (from planners and local authorities to designers and contractors) in terms of making sustainability happen, and how difficult this work is due to the lack of appropriate [deleteor available] tools and factual data. This has reinforced my interest in this subject, to which I intend to contribute [deleteand get involved ]as a researcher. [deleteHence], I intend to develop a PhD thesis related to issues of sustainability and associated tools and practical techniques which may enhance the capacity of policy-makers, managers, planners, public authorities and enterprises to identify the most effective option to promote and achieve the level of sustainability best suited to their own circumstances, maximising the benefits in economic, social and environmental terms.

There is no doubt that American Universities and their outstanding researchers have taken the lead in sustainable development [delete studies], giving unique contributions to the studies of environmental risk management, urban planning and sustainable growth [delete to the entire academic world]. They have also had the ability to establish impressive links with other relevant actors such as technical professional associations, the private sector, regional institutions and civil society, when putting sustainable development concepts into practice. For these reasons, I would like to have the opportunity to develop my PhD in this incredible country, where along with opportunities for my intellectual and professional growth I would have the possibility to meet and work with people of the host country[USA?] and others from around the world, sharing professional and [delete hopefully] creative insights.

The Fulbright Grant would provide me with the possibility to conduct research with the best academic institutions in the world and would reinforce my knowledge in environment, built environment and associated planning, and in the risk management tools necessary to achieve [deletea] sustainable development. I would subsequently be able to use this knowledge with the companies and projects for which I will work in the future, influencing their decision making and hopefully contributing to the sustainable development of the world in which we all live!
Nick,

Thank you so much!

Joana
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
Dear Nick,
Will you please review my motivation letter?