Motivation Letter Which I Wrote While Applying for Masters in Life Science and Health at the University of Paris-Saclay
“I grew up in a tiny village where people were deprived of the essential medical facilities to ameliorate their common diseases. Three of my relatives died due to smallpox; The shortage of effective treatment for post-accidental joint pain forced my father to retire from the army force. These painful personal stories bruised my mind from the moment I became conscious of my surroundings and my country’s lack of advanced medications. Therefore, I always wanted to learn about human diseases during my school and college life and how scientists develop any treatment against them. However, until my freshman year of university, I had limited chances to explore different biological science fields. But from the beginning of my undergraduate study, I saw that opportunity, and immediately I started to feed my brain with books, e.g., Gene: An Intimate History by Siddhartha Mukherjee and research articles. Later, studying my undergraduate courses like molecular biology, immunology and pathology helped me channel my desire, and I grew with inspiration to study bioscience further. During my undergraduate research project, I realized that my hunger for bioscience
is not a fleeting one. I felt like I found my passion, and consequently, I set the rest of my career plan centered around life science. Also, I recognized that I have an inner vision ─deep like an ocean─ to contribute my time to society by engaging myself in research.
During my sophomore years of undergraduate study, a course entitled ‘Plant Pathology’ grabbed my attention like human diseases did in my childhood. As a result, in 2017, I generated an idea related to plant-pathogen interaction, which got accepted in the first National Biotechnology Congress, Bangladesh. Afterward, I reached the final stage of the Biotech Idea Competition. In 2019, I developed my idea even more profoundly and presented it at the National DNA Day Conference. Later, I engaged with my undergraduate research project: ‘The combining ability analysis of seven different characters of Bombyx mori.’ In this project, I analyzed five different crossbreed generations of mulberry silkworms, and as an outcome, I predicted the best crossbreed generation. In the beginning, I grappled with the massive data of my research. However, with an intensive study of research methodology and proper data representation system, I mastered the data handling procedure. Learning the value of data analysis in the research field was the highlight of my undergraduate research work.
My second research project was my internship at Professor O I Joarder DNA and Chromosome research laboratory, University of Rajshahi, Bangladesh. In this project, we identified the molecular features of Pseudomonas syringae, which is primarily responsible for the blast disease. We also measured how to control this pathogen biologically. Luckily, we found Bacillus sp. as the most effective strain against Pseudomonas syringae. Learning hands-on molecular biology techniques, optimizing PCR reactions, and analyzing DNA sequences were the highlights of my six-month internship. In 2020, we published this research work in the Springer publication. This publication journey taught me how to review previous literature to find a research problem and write a scientific paper suitably.
Currently, I am drafting a research manuscript on the relation between the SLC6A4 gene and multiple depressive disorder. During the pandemic, I led a research team. We analyzed non-synonymous single nucleotide proteins (nsSNPs) of the SLC6A4 gene by utilizing various bioinformatics tools to determine the structural and functional impact on SLC6A4 protein by these nsSNPs. After an intensive analysis by more than 15 different bioinformatics tools, we finalized the five most probable damaging positions of SLC6A4 protein. We believe these damaging protein positions will help scientists to target and develop precision medicine in associated fields.
Because of my interest in spreading the knowledge of life science towards mass people, I became an active member of the Rajshahi University Science Club (RUSC) in my university life. During this period, I learned how to manage many people with proper planning and a calm head. Besides, I participated in several inter-university debating tournaments since I was an active member of the Business Forum Debating Federation (BFDF), Rajshahi University. I believe that my argumentative skills, which I learned from my debating experience, helped me brainstorm my research projects more effectively. In 2019, I joined as a ‘Publication Secretary’ in the Department of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, University of Rajshahi, and we published an annual bioscience magazine from the committee. Currently, I am working as a biology instructor at Parent’s Education Care, an A-level institution, and I enjoy my teaching a lot. Besides, I am also learning how to write scientific content for mass people, and I have a personal blog where I write scientific stories.
My motivation towards bioscience has always fueled my enthusiasm for research and collaboration. Happily, it will only grow to be more potent with time. The inspiration for doing a master’s degree abroad originates from my thirst for knowing the unknown and contributing something meaningful towards human welfare. After my master’s degree, I want to pursue my Ph.D. in the same field to fulfill my thirst and move one step further to accomplish my dream: to be an independent, faithful researcher in academia.
To learn cutting-edge research, I believe that the ‘Life Science and Health’ program, offered by Paris-Saclay University, is a perfect choice to reach my future goal. Venturing the core course like genetics and genomics, precision medicine and synthetic biology intrigued me to apply to this program. Besides, the four weeks’ lab-rotation policy and the freedom to choose the best field of research fascinated my mind. The system called ‘Masterials’ ─learning and designing the research from different fields of expertise and presenting it at the end, in front of a jury─ especially grabbed my attention to apply for this life-changing master’s program. Furthermore, I believe that the eight weeks’ internship opportunities in some of the most exquisite laboratories through this program will enhance my hands-on ability in scientific experiments and communication skills in research.
Paris-Saclay University is one of the best institutions in Europe to learn bioscience. Their focus on principal research areas and combined with multiple fields to solve the research problem attracted my conscience. Therefore, I am wholeheartedly looking forward to this program. Besides, throughout history, France has been a multicultural nation. If I get the opportunity to study this program at Paris-Saclay University, it would be great to widen my cultural and linguistic ability. I am excited for the opportunity to develop my lab-based skills and the transferable skills necessary to be an independent researcher at any well-renowned university.”