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Should I mention that I belong to discriminatied national minority in my personal statement?


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Hi!
I am applying to US university for graduate programs. I am a student from Ukraine.
I have excellent academic records (diploma with honors) and an experience of scientific work. I am also the best student in my University.
But there is also one question and I doubt about including it to my personal statement.


“I belong to the nationality of Crimean Tatars. Crimean Tatars was subjected to genocide in the Soviet Union during Stalin’s dictatorship. All the nation was deported from their homeland in 1944 to the Middle Asia (it’s thousands of kilometers!) in the cattle trains. 47% of Crimean Tatars died subsequently from diseases and artificial starvation.
Only after Soviet Union’s decay most of Crimean Tatars started to return home. Now Crimean Tatars are national minority on their homeland and there is still discrimination at all levels. There are only 250,000 of Crimea Tatars nowadays. Even professors in the University can say “stupid like all tatars” or something like this. I’ve faced such discrimination and despite such discrimination, achieved excellent academic results and showed that a representative of my nation can reach vertices in studies and science. I’ve even entered the social organization that protects human rights.”

 

Should I include it in my personal statement? 
First reason why i want to include this to my personal statement is to show that sometimes I had to overcome the prejudice against my nation and by my achievements. I change attitude to my nation. I also show example to my peers who they can reach their goal despite discrimination.
The second reason: Will it increase my chances for study or will I be considered as an underrepresented minority? Taking into consideration that there are only 250,000 of my nation left I will increase diversity of my future grad school.

 

Please give me a reasoned answer. (I mean if you work in admission office or somehow is connected to admissions, or you are a professor....)

 

Please, answer as soon as possible

Edited by Ali.Osmanov1
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I have a friend who works in admissions. It is for undergraduate however, I have talked to a lot of professors about my own personal statement.  I would say graduate schools want to know why YOU are interested in their program. It is all about being a good-fit for the program .   So you have to research each program carefully. A good resource is this website  http://admissionsource.wordpress.com/2007/10/01/everything-i-wish-somebody-would-have-told-me-about-graduate-school-admissions/. Also a book by Donald Asher called Graduate Admissions Essay; Writing Your Way into the Graduate Program of Your Choice is a good resource if you have access to it. Also since you have a unique history you may want to tailor it especially if it is the reason why you want to go to graduate school. On another post  someone mentioned If your identity has driven you to do specific study in related matters, then there is no harm in mentioning that. Since you have done well academically, focus on getting great letter of recommendations from former professors as well. http://graduate.indiana.edu/pdf/GradSchoolGuide.pdf (this also helped a bit for me anyway) Best of luck to you.

Edited by JESC 2012
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