欧米式 or 日本式 Essayの違いとは何か？
日本式 Essay 紹介
- Who I amの説明が非常に弱い or 概念そのものが欠落しています。例えばWhy 〇〇 school? What is your obstacle?のような問いに非常に素直に私のgoalは…私の経験したobstacleは…とanswerをしてしまっている状況に陥っています。日本のEssay (小論文？）に関する教育を受けてはいないので推測にはなりますが、おそらく日本の小論文は問いに対して素直にanswerをしていくことになるでしょう。これらは論文やAcademic Essayで行うもので出願用のEssayでは不適切になる場合が多いです。これをApplication Essayにおいてそのまま行ってしまう傾向が強く出ています。
- 仕事の経験を中心に書く。例えば金融系の方が金融系の内容をコアにしたEssayを組み立てる。Essayは仕事に纏わる話をする場ではありません。自分は〇〇がユニークで、〇〇が強みで…と表面的な差別化を行う訳ではありません。これらの内容はResume and Letter of Reccomendationで行う事になります。
Application Essay (Personal Statement)のGood Sample Essayを紹介させて頂きます。Chicago LLM/Stanford MBAの合格者のessayになります。
欧米式 Essay 紹介
欧米式のEssay,その中でもExcellent and Outstanding qualityなものを紹介させて頂きます。Bias排除の為にどちらも外部sourceを利用させていただきます。
私個人のEssay評価です10を最大として6でEssayのみの場合plus minus 0、合否には影響を与えないという基準にさせていただきます。
University of Chicago Law (LLM?JD?) Personal Statement
なんと大学の公式pageがofficialにgoodだったというPersonal Statementの紹介を行ってくれています。そのうちの１本になります。学校公認（それもChicago Lawの）ですので参考にされると良いでしょう。
I fell in love for the first time when I was four. That was the year my mother signed me up for piano lessons. I can still remember touching those bright, ivory keys with reverence, feeling happy and excited that soon I would be playing those tinkling, familiar melodies (which my mother played every day on our boombox) myself.
To my rather naïve surprise, however, instead of setting the score for Für Elise on the piano stand before me, my piano teacher handed me a set of Beginner’s Books. I was to read through the Book of Theory, learn to read the basic notes of the treble and bass clefs, and practice, my palm arched as though an imaginary apple were cupped between my fingers, playing one note at a time. After I had mastered the note of “C,” she promised, I could move on to “D.”
It took a few years of theory and repetition before I was presented with my very first full-length classical piece: a sonatina by Muzio Clementi. I practiced the new piece daily, diligently following the written directives of the composer. I hit each staccato note crisply and played each crescendo and every decrescendo dutifully. I performed the piece triumphantly for my teacher and lifted my hands with a flourish as I finished. Instead of clapping, however, my teacher gave me a serious look and took both my hands in hers. “Music,” she said sincerely, “is not just technique. It’s not just fingers or memorization. It comes from the heart.”
That was how I discovered passion.
Beethoven, Mozart, Mendelssohn: the arcs and passages of intricate notes are lines of genius printed on paper, but ultimately, it is the musician who coaxes them to life. They are open to artistic and emotional interpretation, and even eight simple bars can inspire well over a dozen different variations. I poured my happiness and my angst into the keys, loving every minute of it. I pictured things, events, and people (some real, some entirely imagined— but all intensely personal) in my mind as I played, and the feelings and melodies flowed easily: frustration into Beethoven’s Sonata Pathétique, wistfulness into Chopin’s nocturnes and waltzes, and sheer joy into Schubert. Practice was no longer a chore; it was a privilege and a delight.
In high school, I began playing the piano for church services. The music director gave me a binder full of 1-2-3 sheet music, in which melodies are written as numbers instead of as notes on a music staff. To make things a bit more interesting for myself—and for the congregation—I took to experimenting, pairing the written melodies with chords and harmonies of my own creation. I rarely played a song the same way twice; the beauty of improvisation, of songwriting, is that it is as much “feeling” as it is logic and theory. Different occasions and different moods yielded different results: sometimes, “Listen Quietly” was clean and beautiful in its simplicity; other times, it became elaborate and nearly classical in its passages. The basic melody and musical key, however, remained the same, even as the embellishments changed. The foundation of good improvisation and songwriting is simple: understanding the musical key in which a song is played—knowing the scale, the chords, the harmonies, and how well (or unwell) they work together—is essential. Songs can be rewritten and reinterpreted as situation permits, but missteps are obvious because the fundamental laws of music and harmony do not change.
Although my formal music education ended when I entered college, the lessons I have learned over the years have remained close and relevant to my life. I have acquired a lifestyle of discipline and internalized the drive for self-improvement. I have gained an appreciation for the complexities and the subtleties of interpretation. I understand the importance of having both a sound foundation and a dedication to constant study. I understand that to possess a passion and personal interest in something, to think for myself, is just as important.
Stanford MBA: What matters most to you and why?
評価 9 /10
Like rivers, people live in motion. My motion comes from following my passion, getting inspired and inspiring other people to pursue theirs. Why does passion matter most to me?
Passion shapes life decisions, just like riverbanks. In sixth grade, I had a remarkable biology teacher. He was in love with his subject, and so was the class. He showed us NatGeo movies, planted palm trees with us, and took us on exciting study trips to the forest and the Volga. I remember scrutinizing iodine-colored onion cells under the microscope and deciding to become a biologist. I never did, though, because the melancholic seventh-grade teacher just read the textbook aloud and ruined the charm of biology for me. But I learned that passion is contagious.
Luckily, the passionate math teacher never changed. She recited math haiku, ran ‘quantitative battles, and stayed long hours to prepare me for national competitions. Her radiant eyes proved that mathematics was more than a toolkit for the sciences. It was the Wonderland in my head. Once I started a problem or a proof, I fell down the rabbit hole into the world of variables, sets, and equations. I discovered relations among them, created rules for their behavior, constructed a logic, and told the story. Passion for mathematics became an integral part of my life.
So did passion for foreign cultures. In 2004 Robert, an international education activist organized my trip to Wisconsin. I lived with his family, attended a local high school, and made many friends in the classroom and on the soccer pitch. I enjoyed this experience and wanted to learn more about the USA and other nations. By sharing his passion for cultural exchange, Bob inspired me to study languages and international relations in college.
Passion is my energy stream. Surfing YouTube videos in late 2007 I came across La donna è mobile by Luciano Pavarotti. His performance overwhelmed me. Intense look, emphatic voice, the force and joy in every word. I learned the aria by heart. Now whenever I feel blue or need to boost my confidence before a presentation, I sing it. My listeners are seldom grateful, but at least my energy is always up.
Passion grants persistence. After my language-focused undergrad, doing quantitative masters at Bocconi University could have been a nightmare. But it wasn’t, because nightmares require sleep at night. Another reason was my old love for mathematics. My goal was to catch up on all the quantitative ideas missed at college. I patiently crawled through the program. I sat at the office doors of my statistics and mathematics professors during all office hours and spent Christmas breaks with books. I couldn’t help it. Curiosity persisted and paid well. The quantitative beast submitted. I felt the power of passion.
Passion brings people together like rivers. In early 2015, I did a London-based commercial due diligence with Alex, a manager with McKinsey Germany. We quickly discovered our common passion for value investing. The discovery brought efficient and enjoyable team environment. In just three weeks, we researched dozens of documents and interviewed 40 people. These data and our knowledge of the investment industry helped us predict the fate of a $3B big data company. We advised our client to withdraw from the bid, while most competitors stayed. In November 2015, I learned that the company lost 70% in price. We were right. Shared passion helped us do an exceptionally great job.
Passion changes the world. After I joined McKinsey, people started reaching out to me for career advice. Some needed help with their CVs or didn’t know where to start interview preparation. Others were just looking for encouragement. I realized these people needed me. I needed them, too. Their smiles and thank-you notes gave me the feeling of worthiness. I discovered the passion for mentorship and joined a non-profit career advisory
The easiest and yet the most efficient way to change the world is to inspire others. Changing the world for the better is necessary. It makes people happier. Like in a mirror, it ultimately makes you happier. My sixth-grade biology teacher knew it. I know it now, too. With every article and every university presentation, I try to share my passion for knowledge and show people that their career opportunities are unbounded. Am I succeeding? I hope so. Time will show.
Rivers shape banks. Passionate people change themselves and the world around them. My goal in life is to be such a river person.
もし上記のessay2本の魅力が十分に理解できない場合は欧米admissionのpersonal statementで求められているコアな部分の理解が浅いことの裏返しになります。Chicago Lawは学校が公認でgoodだと公開しているものになりますのでEssay (Personal Statement) に対する理解を根本から変える必要性があります。
2本目のEssayのriverの彼はRussian like English Essayにならないようにカウンセラーを雇ってEnglish Essayになるように気をつけた、と公言していますが非常に高い精度で完成されていますので読み手に相当なimpactを与えると思います。ネットに転がっているEssayや周りの方の日本人によって書かれているものと比較をすると歴然としたqualityの違いを感じられると思います。TOEFL 118 GMAT 770 and McKinseyというbackgroundのようですが彼の非常にできそうな感じ、がessayに滲み出ているのを感じられます（とてもcharmingな方なので動画を参考いただけると良いでしょう）。Stanford MBAのみに出願しofferをdeclineしちゃった！という点もcoolですね。
あくまで私個人的な感想ですが（アメリカでTA等を通じてたくさんessayを読んだ経験を踏まえると）Piano Essayはapplicantsのうち上位10％、River Essayは上位5%には食い込むと思います。もちろんどちらの大学もレベルが高いのであくまで推測にはなりますが。