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They tell me it has to be around 500 words. Here is the prompt: 

The statement of purpose is a 500-word essay outlining your objectives for graduate study, career plans and reasons for applying to our program.


Here is what I have so far:



I believe that now is the most opportune time to continue my education as a conductor and educator on the graduate level with the goal of obtaining a Master of Music degree in Wind Conducting. I plan in this process to expand my knowledge of repertoire, develop advanced rehearsal methods and techniques, and obtain more experience as a conductor – and in these processes also mature as a leader and as a professional. I am most interested in the idea of studying lesser-known works and bringing them to a larger audience and in supporting the composition of new works of music for band or orchestra. In addition, my own experiences travelling to other countries (as well as learning from my undergraduate mentor who was himself a Fulbright fellow) have interested me very much in the idea taking my study of musical works abroad. Among the reasons I have sought admission to the [INSTITUTION] are the program’s world-class wind ensembles and the prospect of working for and studying under distinguished faculty members [PROFESSORS' NAMES].  

After obtaining my graduate degree I wish to continue my career as an effective and successful instrumental music educator and wind band conductor on the secondary or post-secondary level, perhaps in time earning my Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting; also among my long-term career goals are premiering new musical works – and rediscovering old ones – and continuing my lifelong interest in studying the vast repertoire of music for band and orchestra.




I am having difficulty knowing how to expand some of these thoughts. Should I include research interests? 



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If you have specific research interests that align with the professors at the school, definitely mention that. 

I've seen a lot of advice on this forum about following the past, present, future format. Answering these questions in your essay might help you with that: What made you decide to pursue a graduate degree? What experiences did you have in undergrad that led you to this point? What research have you done or what specific musical experiences have you had? What are your long-term career goals?

You've definitely already answered some of this, but more can be added while still fitting the word count. 

Finally, music is a very passionate subject, so I think it should be fairly easy for you to inject some of this into your essay. What makes you want to pursue music in the first place? Undergraduate degrees in music are tough, and the fact that you've completed one (or will soon) must say something about your passion. Demonstrate this in the essay!

Good luck! I have a bachelor's degree in music too. I have chosen to continue down the path of my other undergrad major, but I still play music daily and I have tons of respect for people like you who work so hard to get to this point.

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