Applying to: HKS (mpp); Yale Jackson Institute; Stanford IPS
GRE: 162/162/3.5; TOEFL 106; GPA: 3.7 ; Bachelor in Political Science (from a decent university in China, but not on very top)
Very strong recommendations (one letter from a Harvard alumni, one letter from a famous scholar trained in the US, and one from my undergraduate mentor)
nearly 4 years' amazing working experience in a government-sponsored think tank, mentored by a top scholar: coauthored two policy articles submitted for top leaders in China, Singapore and Hong Kong; interviewed with quotes by WSJ through telephone in English for several times; published three single authored articles on a policy journal in English, where one article was intensively cited by an editorial piece on WSJ; single authored one book chapter in English, coauthored three another book chapters in English (authors in the books were quite famous in academia, several come from Cornell, Princeton, Harvard and Oxbridge); columnist bilingually for several top newspapers in East Asia; invited three times by a TV program as a youngest speaker and debated there regarding regional issues with a former secretary of an Asian country's president and with a senior research fellow of Stanford; coauthored a policy article submitted to a forum hosted by China's central government, and several HKS professors attended the forum; presented three papers in English at international conferences, where one conference was co-orgainzed by a research institution of Harvard; provides policy consultancies for a think tank serving Hong Kong Government; One single authored academic article is under external peer-review by a SSCI journal (already passed through editorial review).
Commitment to public service is quite good; Research area greatly fits in with HKS.
Quantitative experience is good, and I learned some statistics, caculus, linear algebra and MATLAB/Python/R/STATA programming; essays were organized as a story connecting my experiences; career goal is to be a "public intellectual".
Shortcomings: (1) GRE/Toefl writing scores suck (22 in TOEFL writing). Hopefully so many English publications could help, otherwise my other materials of application would not be reviewed simply because the below-requirement writing score (already stated in optional essay); (2) two nightmare typos in JFK essay, including a spelling error of the name of a harvard institution.
Welcome all invaluable feedback. Thanks.