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Pakistiani Woman in Business: MSc Industrial Organisational and Business Psychology, London, UK

Born in Pakistan and a citizen of the United States, I have been raised and educated in Pakistan as well as in America, helping me to become fully bicultural as well as fully bilingual. I have family in England as well as America and I have spent many summer vacations in the UK – along with significant periods of time in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Kuwait.  These experiences growing up in diverse environments help to explain my great passion for travel and exploring other cultures and their peoples. They will also help me to excel in the business world since I am as well-read as I am well-traveled and have a lot of experience in cultural and linguistic diversity across 3 continents.

My first choice for graduate study is XXXX’s MSc Program in Industrial Organisational and Business Psychology. I hope to be selected to your distinguished program so that I might have a chance to prove myself as a creative thinker from a variety of different perspectives and someone with a most keen interest in human organization in the work place, particularly the importance of employee satisfaction to corporate success. It is in these areas where I find myself reading most frequently in my free time. I appreciate the especially distinguished nature of your program at XXXX in London, especially in light of your high rankings; and I very much look forward to taking full advantage of the vast intellectual and cultural resources of London itself, particularly with respect to the Pakistani diaspora.

I look forward to a long professional lifetime of constant integration of my professional experiences and leadership skills in such a way as to maximize my contribution to the entity for which I am working. At XXXX, I look forward to the highest quality of rigorous instruction that will enable and inspire me to much better understand the psychological and organizational principles involved in the management of business interests and non-profit organizations around the world.

I look forward to a long professional lifetime of empowering women in the corporate world. First and foremost, I am a Pakistani woman, and I most admire women like Asma Jahangir, a prominent human right activist, and Benazir Bhutto, a former prime minister of Pakistan. The brutal nature of Pakistani patriarchy angers me and leaves me highly motivated to work for change in my land of origin and among the peoples of our diaspora, especially in London.

I am dedicated to public service and have volunteered at a hospital, because this is the way that I was raised. I come from a very loving family. My father is a retired police officer who was quite prominent in his day in Pakistan. An honest man who was always deeply troubled by the corruption and inefficiency that he saw around him in government and law enforcement, he will always be my hero and one of my foremost role models.  

I thank you for considering my application to University College London.

I/O psychology, also known as industrial, occupational or organizational psychology, refers to the controlled study of human behavior in the work environment.  An I/0 psychologist will typically use scientific-based research to identify what current problems exists in the workplace and how attitudes and behaviors can be improved.

An I/O psychologist will then apply various psychological theories and principles with the specific aim to modify employee morale. Common variables that affect the workplace include conflict between employees, a decrease in individual physical health and well-being and individual psychological risks.

An I/O psychologist may work closely with a human resource team to figure out the most effective and strategic way to ensure that all employees are healthy and happy psychologically in their working environment. In fact, I/O psychologist now run HR departments at some institutions and companies, while others are simply helping HR departments with best practices.

Sample 1st 2 Paragraphs, I/O Psychology, Disabled in the Workplace

XXXX College is my first choice for graduate school for a variety of reasons including your strengths, diversity, and creativity of your program leading to the Master’s Degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. Human nature and organization, especially communication technology have always been my areas of most intense curiosity and exploration. Something of a cross between a tech geek and a social worker, I am a young woman who feels a very special calling to contribute throughout the course of a long professional lifetime to advancing the causes of the disabled in the work place - inclusion, access, enrichment - drawing upon 3 years of current experience working with the disabled. My ideal job would be to serve as an evaluation and assessment analyst/manager, contributing to strategy formation and the design, development, and execution of evaluations and assessment plans for specific populations and/or projects.

My greatest contribution that I could make to society, if accepted into the MA I/O Psychology program, would be to help and assist individuals with developmental disabilities in the workforce. There is a stigma against these individuals and employers may not think they are the right fit for a job due to the employment interview. However, just because they don’t follow the “norm” or answer the questions in ways familiar to the employers, does not mean they are a bad fit for the job. Interviews aren’t fair if one’s social skills are not too strong. However, this doesn’t mean that they cannot carry out the task better than the next person. By creating these assessments an employer would be able to see if this person would be a good fit and if they have the ability to handle such tasks.

Masters Degree Admission: I/O Industrial & Organizational Psychology

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Sample 1st Paragraph for the Masters Degree in Industrial Organizational Psychology

Earning my BA in Psychology in 2001, I now have almost a decade and a half putting that experience to work. Thus, I feel strongly that I am at my optimal point for excelling in graduate school utilizing the professional tool kit that I have developed as a problem solver and communicator, training new employees in the social services, designing improvement programs for employees, along with general management experience. My current position as the Program Manager, since September of 2013, for XXXX County Family Haven, in particular, has provided me with a vast range of knowledge and skills which I feel strongly will enable me to excel in the future as an I/O Psychology professional, working in either the public or private sectors on behalf of the organization(s) that I will serve.

The Humanitarian Side of a Master´s in I-O Psychology

Reducing global poverty, now there´s a thing. It might not seem obvious to everyone, but I-O psychology plays a key role within the group of fields moving into this area.  

The United Nations (U.N.) Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) include eight imperatives established in the year 2000. They were agreed upon by countries and development institutions worldwide.

They include aspirations like reducing extreme poverty by half, providing universal access to primary education and halting the spread of HIV/AIDS by 2015. Yes, a date long past.

The truth is, reducing global poverty is, indeed, a lot of work. It requires work by aid professionals, volunteers and local community members, particularly in the area of capacity building efforts, which focus on workforce development.

It also necessitates teamwork. Poverty reduction and socioeconomic development require individuals and organizations to collaborate effectively within and across agencies and institutions.

The field of industrial-organizational (I-O) psychology, the science of work, has been interfacing with efforts to promote human and global development for many years.

I-O psychology entails evidence-based practice — research and the application of empirical findings to real-world problems, and it covers a wide variety of topics pertaining to work and organizational behavior. Many of them are relevant to improving poverty alleviation and environmental sustainability initiatives.

I-O psychology´s focus areas include but are not limited to work and occupational analysis, entrepreneurship, selection and staffing, training, survey research, leadership, team dynamics, motivation, work satisfaction and performance evaluation.

Recent years have witnessed the emergence of a sub-discipline within I-O psychology. It´s called humanitarian work psychology (HWP). HWP is the synthesis of I-O psychology with efforts to enhance human welfare.

It involves the application of I-O psychology to humanitarian work. The focus here is on aid and development workers’ well-being and job performance. It is also involves science and practice aimed at generally making more humanitarian—by promoting what the ILO calls “decent work”. Decent work entails safe conditions, adequate wages, workers’ rights, social dialogue and social protection.

In effect, I-O psychology is broadening its scope to include a more deliberate focus on the triple bottom line: people, planet and profit.

Naturally, some I-O psychologists have been doing what is now called HWP for years (e.g., Franco, Bennett, Kanfer, & Stubblebine, 2004). Until recently, however, these efforts were typically discrete and disconnected from one another, performed in the absence of a broader community of like-minded others “doing pro-social I-O.”

HWP is providing organization to these efforts, enabling a collective, proactive, strategic agenda to increase I-O psychology’s visibility and impact.

Signs of HWP’s influence and reach can be found almost everywhere. They have appeared in the form of books, articles, conference presentations, research studies, applied projects, list serves and university courses devoted to the topic over the years.

For example, Humanitarian Work Psychology was published in 2012. (Carr, MacLachlan, & Furnham, 2012). The following year, an additional volume emerged, titled Using I-O Psychology for the Greater Good (Olson-Buchanan, Bryan, & Thompson, 2013).

The world’s first graduate courses in HWP were taught in 2010 at the Universities of Bologna and Barcelona, through the European Master in Work, Organizational, and Personnel Psychology (WOP-P) postgraduate university program.

In conclusion, the area of work is central to poverty reduction and sustainable development. The psychology of work therefore has a big role to play in development and improving our world.

Advances in humanitarian work psychology can facilitate data-driven decision making and evidence-based practice as the world strives to improve living and working conditions for current and future generations, and you can be part of this movement. In fact, if you´re reading this article, we can bet you´d love to. You might be concerned about how you´re going to get into their competitive field. If you are, and you´d like some help with your personal statement of purpose to give you the best chance of breaking in, please let us know. Good luck with all your endeavors!