Growing up in Kazakhstan and reading mostly in English, just about everything that I could get my hands on, I struggled to understand who I was, who we were, the Kazkhs, through the eyes of the West. Thus, I have labored mightily for many years to understand the East through the eyes and heart of the West. Now, I want very much to fulfill my lifelong dream of studying in the West, so that I can continue to better understand not only who we are, but where we are going, how we are to best continue to integrate ourselves into global society.
I am now 21 and more curious than ever about the West, a woman with a great zeal for study and discovery; most of all, I want to educate myself, so that I will be able to help my people to prosper. This coming summer 2012, I will be graduating from Kazakh National University with a B.A. in History and Japanese Studies, History. I want very much to begin graduate study at XXXX University because of the comprehensive, multi-disciplinary focus of your program and its appreciation for diversity. I keenly look forward to learning from other graduate students from all over the world. In addition to Kazakh, Russian, and English, I also speak, read, and write Japanese and look forward to developing a long-term interest in Kazkh-Japanese relations.
By the time that I was in high school, I realized that I wanted to devote my life to Eastern studies, guided by my profound passion for the study of languages, history and culture, especially Japanese. After graduating from school at the top of my class and earning a high score on the Unified National Test, I won an educational grant to attend university studies and I threw myself entirely into my studies. By my second year, I had passed the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT), receiving a Level 3. In my third year, I passed the new Level N3 for this examination. I have especially enjoyed taking part in student discussions, debates, and seminars conducted in my department; research is my special delight, writing reports on historical, political, and socio-economic issues. This year, I participated in the University Spring Student Conference, speaking on the topic of "Techno Nation: Japanese Communication Problems”; I was awarded third place in my category. I also contributed to student seminars on such subjects as "The OSCE in the Focus of Attention" and "Kazakhstan's Chairmanship in the OSCE - the World Trust.” I have compiled a variety of reports for our Japanese guests. In the spring of 2010, I was one of five finalists for the university-wide Superstudent-2010 Award, and participated in the Brain Ring intellectual games. In 2010-2011, I was awarded the Presidential Scholarship, being acknowledged as the best student in my Department.
I am currently doing my thesis research on "The Great Eastern Japan Earthquake: Long Term Effects for the Global Community,” examining how the 2011 earthquake in Japan and the subsequent nuclear tragedy affected global perceptions of Japan. I spend most of my time searching for statistics, articles, forecasts and the statements of Japanese politicians in English, Russian, and Japanese. My long term goal is to continue to do research into the vital social and political issues that have the greatest impact on East Asia, especially Kazakhstan and Japan. Princeton is my first choice because it prepares the strongest orientalists in the world of education. I thank you for considering my application to your esteemed program.