Hello everyone,

I have found a great scholarship program which I would like to pursue, though it is really tough in rules and bureaucracy. In my motivation letter, I should show why I have chosen that particular program and how my interest in the field has grown with the time. However, I also should be honest and sincere, so I tried not to use many 'phrases'. If you could help me with the flow, style and content, I would be extremely grateful to you. Any comment will be helpful.

So, here's my letter:

Dear Sir/ Madam,

The reason I am applying for the Fulbright Program and really want to win the contest is that I want to pursue Masterís Degree in Education.
Two years ago, when my boyfriend offered me to move to Moscow with him, I felt angst. By this time, I had already experienced the severities of working as a teacher in state institutions and in private linguistic centers which led me eventually to two calm years of working as an office manager with predictable routine and salary. I wanted to change my life and my job for something interesting and something I could do well, but I was still frightened of career opportunities in teaching. But Moscow has changed my vision of the profession.

My interest in English language started to grow since my first attendance of an extracurriculum course at the age of ten. Since then, I have never stopped learning the language and at the age of 14 I decided to pass English as one of the exams to be distributed to the 9th and 10th year of school specialized in English. Then, I entered International Market Institute, Department of Liguistics, to study translation and interpretation. I graduated with a Bachelorís degree with honors and started working in teaching.

My teaching career hasnít been so smooth, however, as I lived in a city without many career opportunities for teachers. So, I had to stop my teaching career for a while and work as an office manager, though I continued private teaching and communicating with our company partners in English, and also sometimes translating legal documents. This job took its toll as it taught me how to communicate in business, how companies work and how documents are processed.

The revival of my spirits started along with my move to Moscow. This city has proposed a tremendous amount of spheres where I can develop as a teacher, so I felt confident in choosing teaching as my main field. Thus, I have worked in TEFL for almost two years already and I have never been disappointed.

I work a lot. My usual working day lasts about 10 hours. These are not only class hours with students, but also time devoted to planning and preparation of materials. Once I said to my boyfriend that I didnít know what I would do if I had spare time. He said, ďI know. You would work.Ē And I guess it is true, because my work includes many things that are usually unnoticed if you are a student. For example, I sometimes even need to design my own worksheets with exercises that I had developed myself to suit needs of a particular learner or a particular group. Or, I can spend hours looking for an appropriate film to watch at the next lesson. But I enjoy it, especially when I see my studentsí progress, and see happy smiles on their faces when they finally understand a difficult issue. I could probably publish a book with my exercises if I had proper academic background to guarantee their efficiency.

During my two-yearís work as a teacher, I have become inspired by lesson planning and classroom management, though I feel lack of theoretical knowledge in these areas. I have also developed keen interest in instructional strategies as I sometimes have difficulties in choosing the right one to deliver my requirements to students.

In order to fill some of my gaps in teaching knowledge, I prepared myself for TKT (3 Modules) and passed it in February, 2014, all with Band 4. That helped me not only evaluate my knowledge on an international scale and become more confident in my work, but also inspired me with more ideas on what techniques I can employ further in teaching. But I still feel lack of solid knowledge of pedagogical strategies, of how to instruct students efficiently, how language is acquired and what main principles of curriculum development are.

Last, but not the least, two years of living in American culture, communicating with real American people will provide me with broad knowledge of realia and the national mentality Ė the things that you can learn only from personal experience. This is information which will not be filtered through mass media and movies and thus, it is valuable to share with colleagues and students in Russia.

Therefore, it seems a natural step for me to continue my studies of teaching and pursue a Masterís Degree program in Education.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely yours,
Oksana Popova