I am pursuing my undergraduate degree in marketing, thus, my desire to pursue a graduate degree in sustainability management may come as a surprise to some; whereas marketing emphasizes consumption, sustainability management preaches resource conservation. I seek knowledge on a wide range of subject matters because they help expand my thinking horizon and my work experiences with both for-profit and non-profit organizations have also been inspired by the desire to better understand the world. While globalization has mostly been a positive force, it is also encouraging consumption lifestyle all over the world. Moreover, global warming poses a grave danger to the future of mankind. All of these insights have convinced me that we need to take drastic steps to responsibly use the limited resources of our planet which is why I have decided to pursue my Master in Sustainability Management.
Every generation is responsible for creating a better world for the future generations and our generation is no different. Fortunately, my generation has risen to the challenge as evident by the rising importance of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) among commercial and non-commercial organizations. But my work experiences in both U.S. and abroad have revealed that majority of the organizations only practice sustainability management for publicity purposes and only incorporate sustainability principles in few aspects of their overall operations. This is either due to poor understanding of the economic benefits or the misconception that sustainability is mostly about recycling and/or using materials that are nonhazardous to the environment. My education at Columbia University will equip me with the knowledge and skills to convince organizations that sustainability encompasses almost all aspects of operations.
Columbia University also appeals to me because it has been a leader in producing graduates who are not afraid to utilize innovation to solve some of the most difficult global issues. When we talk about sustainability management, we often think of corporations but I believe that sustainability management should be pursued by everyone from governments to corporations to private individuals. I have gained experiences with both for-profit and non-profit organizations including social welfare organizations and technology companies and have realized that knowledge and awareness are often the first step towards a major progress. My career plans do not only include providing consulting services to large and small-scale corporations but also take advantage of internet and technology as well as grassroots campaigns to promote responsible and environmentally-friendly lifestyles among citizens. To gain ideas, I have also done extensive research on Columbia University’s alumni who are working towards promoting sustainable lifestyle practices in the U.S. as well as abroad including some of the poorest countries in the world.
I am also excited about attending Columbia University because I will have the opportunity to be taught by world-class faculty and interact with smart students from diverse cultural and professional backgrounds. In addition, I will also have access to the University’s strong professional network that includes both commercial and non-commercial organizations. Graduate studies is one of the most important investments in our future and I cannot ask for a better place than Columbia University as I prepare myself for a lifetime career of promoting sustainable lifestyle and business practices.