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Sample Personal Statement for LLM

In August 2000, I spent 7 most special and memorable days in my life. Through a very stringent screening test, I distinguished myself from the rest several hundred outstanding students from Universities of Beijing who had won “Top Scholarship” and became one of the 14 most outstanding students to embark on a 7-day visit to Australia. In Australia, we met with students from major universities, had exchanges with them, and also visited leading Australia enterprises. This exchange program, brief as it was, allowed me to experience Japanese culture and traditions. The experience has proved defining—for me, this very first experience of setting step on a foreign country enabled me to significantly broaden my horizon and to acquire totally new perspectives. I realized that I have far more exciting things to learn in countries other than my own.

At this very moment, as a Master’s student majoring in international economic law on the verge of completing my program, I have felt the need, more urgently than ever, to pursue an advanced LLM program to receive a typically western legal education and rigorous trainings that may equip me with an international perspective. The legal system of a country is closely related to its political, social and cultural traditions and to its overall economic situation. In particular, International Economic Law that I study is a new discipline that is designed to regulate international economic relations; it involves international public law, international private law and the civil and business laws of different countries. It is my conviction that the best way to learn this subject well is by plunging myself into the major countries in the world to experience and to know their specific legal systems.

While boasting a most developed economy, the United States is also reputed for its most advanced teaching and research, and its legal system is also most well-developed in the world. Those factors motivate me to apply for a Master’s program in International Economic Law (International Trade Law) from your esteemed university. I firmly believe that my strong interest in this subject, my solid and comprehensive knowledge of know, and my important potential to perform academic research will facilitate my successful completion of my proposed program.

I have the confidence that my past academic experience can make me a competitive for your program. The reason for my confidence is based on the fact that I have received the best legal education that a Chinese student can expect in his/her own country—an undergraduate program in the Law School of Tsinghua University and a Master’s program in the Law School of Peking University. Whereas an elitist Chinese student belongs to either Peking University or Tsinghua University, I have been nurtured by both of them. What makes me especially proud is that my educational experience is not confined simply to China. Apart from my brief tour of Australia, I have also attended a one-month joint program in Korea .

My undergraduate program at Tsinghua University permitted me to systematically learn all the basic courses of law, and expose me to major categories of individual laws. I was most interested in such laws as civil law, contract law, international economic law and maritime business law. My receiving of a spate of accolades and scholarships is an indication of my academic excellence.

For my Master’s program at Peking Law School, I chose International Economic Law as the area of my specialization. To deepen my study, I read most of the classical works on the subject and my voluminous reading encompassed International Trade Law by Clive Schmitthoff and International Finance by Hal S. Scott & Philop A. Wellons. An important extracurricular experience is our Law School’s Moot Court Contest at which my team members and I won the first prize through close collaboration and teamwork.

In 2002, my academic performance qualified me as one of the four students from the entire mainland to go to Korea to attend a course program. For one month, together with law students from all of the world, I studied three important courses Introduction to American law, International Financial Law, and WTO and China, all delivered by American professors. I not only achieved high scores for those three courses but also adapted to the American-styled education under an all-English environment. This experience will pave the way for me to receive more extensive American education in my LLM program.

As law is more an applied rather than theoretical subject, I have made conscious efforts to undertake internships at local law firms during summer and winter vacations. This summer I worked at Beijing Arbitration Committee where I was exposed to a number of international economic and trade disputes. In coping with those specific cases, I applied my knowledge on one hand and, on the other hand, I developed a more direct and practical understanding of the laws in international economy and trade, as well as relevant international conventions, that I had learned in class.

With the rapid scientific and technological advances, social progress and media proliferation, the economies of various countries in the world are becoming increasingly interdependent, and economic globalization has become a tendency that no one can reverse. With China’s accession into the WTO, China has established close and broad economic relationships with all the WTO members of the world and China’s trade volumes with its major trade partners have increased on an unprecedented scale. For China, international economic activities will occur within a single unified framework from now on. My objective is to grasp in-depth knowledge in international economy and trade, and especially the knowledge of the laws and regulations in those two fields in the world’s major economic forces like the United States and European Union. With such an education, I will be well-equipped to play an important role in facilitating the economic exchanges between China and the rest of the world. Your esteemed university is known for its leading position in the teaching and research of international economic (trade) law. Your strong faculty and advanced pedagogical resources makes your university my ideal choice.

It is my hope that my systematic education at your university will give me the necessary foundation for a rewarding career in international economic (trade) law. In this age of increasing economic (trade) conflicts, my professional knowledge and training will help to ease the tension and promote the healthy development of economic ties between China and the rest of the world. I believe this will be the most important use to which I can apply my education.


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