JET Program Statement of Purpose Essay

I posted another JET Vlog about my thoughts on the JET Statement of Purpose

Here is my statement of purpose:

One day when I was thirteen years old, my mother brought home Bruce Feiler’s book Learning to Bow, a memoir of his experience participating in the JET program. This was the first book I had ever read about Japan that wasn’t highly fictitious and I was, to say the least, utterly fascinated. By the time I turned the last page, I was convinced; upon graduation I would apply to the JET Program and teach English in Japan. One of the main objectives of JET is to promote cross-cultural exchange between Japan and the United States. I believe an interest in and understanding of other cultures not only positively contributes to the study of foreign languages but can also prepare young adults for participation in an increasingly globalized world. I have wanted to participate in this program for a long time and am convinced that I am an ideal candidate for an ALT position in the JET Program.

To begin, my passion for Japanese history and culture extend well beyond casual curiosity. This May, I will graduate with a double major in International Relations and History and a minor in Asian Studies. With such an expansive degree and my repeated placement on the Dean’s List for academic excellence, my talent as a student and commitment to hard work and education is self-evident. Participation in the JET Program means more to me than just an opportunity to live and work in Japan. I have a special interest in higher education and, ultimately, would like to receive a PhD in Japanese History and teach at the university level. In addition to my academic achievements and commitment to Asian studies, I am an active participant in Boston University’s student life. I am the Vice President of BU’s Mountaineering Club, a member of the Undergraduate History Society, BU’s Zen Society, and a participant in Boston University’s International History Institute, all positions that have helped develop my leadership skills.

I also have diverse work experience. In addition to attending school full time, I have worked throughout my college career. I believe this has helped me become an extremely trustworthy and reliable person and a dedicated employee with a strong work ethic. I have had several education-related jobs such as; teaching beginning and intermediate swimming lessons, designing and implementing animal and environmental conservation programs at a major zoo, and providing rock climbing lessons at BU’s Fitness and Recreation Center. I believe this extensive experience teaching a wide variety of subjects to students from the age of six to thirty-five and my tremendous faith in active, hands-on learning has prepared me well for a position in JET.

It has been my experience that teachers have the ability to ‘make-or-break’ a subject. A passionate teacher that promotes an open and positive learning environment can spark an interest for the subject in her students that a disconnected teacher could never match. Particularly in the study of language, active participation and an emphasis on conversation are essential to success. As an ALT, I hope to instill an interest in language and cultural studies in my students by bringing a fresh, young perspective to the classroom that would be an amazing supplement to the preexisting curriculum.

I am a smart, well-educated young adult who has strong academic performance and is dedicated, confident and reliable. Additionally, my teaching and work experience makes me a well-rounded individual with a plethora of personal experiences and strong interpersonal skills. I do not, however, consider these to be my most important qualities. Rather, I believe that it is my unrivaled enthusiasm and passion for Japan and teaching that makes me a truly unique candidate for the JET Program and, if accepted, will make me an exemplary participant. My acceptance into the JET Program would not only mark the culmination of my adolescent dreams but also mesh seamlessly with my career goals by providing me with an opportunity to improve upon my Japanese language skills, teaching experience, and deepen my understanding of Japan through cross-cultural exchange and immersion.

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Comments (7)

  1. Kei

    My statement of purpose was about one tenth the length of that. Just goes to show, the whole application process is a mystery, haha.

    November 9, 2010
  2. theherpofthederplex

    Can you read my SOP before I send it in on monday?

    November 25, 2011
  3. Tam

    Hello, I’m preparing for the JET this year. Would you be interested in reading my Statement? If you do, please respond to me along with your e-mail address. Thank you.


    November 3, 2013
    • ConstantineInTokyo

      Hi Tam,

      At this point, it’s been about 4 years since I actually applied to the JET Program, so I’m not certain that my opinion on your SoP is the most up-to-date!

      November 5, 2013
  4. Jessica

    Hello! I was just wondering about the page length. In the instructions, they say that the essay must not be over 2 pages. But it seems that yours does. Does this mean that they are actually not too strict about it?

    Thank you!

    November 17, 2013
  5. Dantrell

    Hello there. I’m was actually in the middle of applying for the JET Program when I came across this VLOG. Everything in the application is finished but I’m still iffy about what I’ve written in my SOP. After reading what you have here, now I’m even more unsure about it. I was wondering if you could take a look at it and tell me what you think? Thanks in advance.

    November 24, 2013
  6. tonia

    please send me my statement via email

    June 18, 2015

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