A statement of purpose, also known as a letter of intent, or LOI, is a brief, focused essay submitted as part of your admission package to a school or university. The LOI establishes intent to enroll by informing Admissions of your educational and career background. The admissions department reviews the LOI, along with the other submitted materials, to assess whether a student is a worthy candidate for their school’s graduate program.
It is in your best interest to deliver a high-quality LOI, one that highlights your best qualities, both academic and professional. Think of your LOI as a document that sells your strengths, your background and your drive. Consider the following tips as you begin to structure your letter of intent.
A letter of intent is a serious and heavily-weighted piece of your admissions package. Unlike a college application essay, where your goal is to impress the admissions committee with your passion and your enthusiasm, a LOI is a more studied document, a sample of your productive, disciplined process. Be as specific as possible about why this particular program is the right one. Describe how your background led you to school as the next step, and how your background qualifies you for admittance. Pay attention to detail and adhere to the admission deadlines.
With some time and focus, you can make your LOI an effective piece of the package that not only highlights, but also sells, your academic and professional potential.