Among the 26 English alphabets, the one I like most is the capitalized D because this alphabet, simple as it is, is the most beautiful one. The two strokes, one vertical line and one curve, adumbrate two totally divergent trajectories as if serving as constant indicator of the psyche of the professionals in the advertising industry: to travel from one point to another, there is an infinite number of routes to choose; but ultimately speaking, there are only two routes: one is along a straight line, the other along a curve. While the general public may opt for the first, advertising professionals should decide on the second. A curved trajectory may well enable one to expand his horizon, enrich his experience of life, and cultivate his capability for excellent interpersonal exchange and communication. I maintain the conviction that the longer the journey of life that one travels, the richer the experience one can derive from life and hence the greater the novelty that he can create out of the apparently commonplace.

In 1998, I entered XX University with remarkable performance at the National College Entrance Examination (among the top 10 percent of the participants majoring in Humanities Disciplines). During the first year of my undergraduate studies, I majored in International Law but it immediately dawned on me that I was not meant for studies in this field and my real interest lied in advertising. Therefore, with extra efforts I audited all the major courses in advertising and in the second year, with a solid command of all the theoretical knowledge of the basic courses, I transferred to Advertising Speciality. Once I embarked on studying what really interested me, I made rapid progress and my GPA reached 3.5 (among the top three for 26 students of my class). In addition, I achieved the highest score of the class in four most important courses in the field: History of Chinese and Foreign Advertising, Principles of Advertising, Advertisement Planning, and Mass Communication.

As I delved deeper into my subject, I came to acquire an increasingly profound understanding of the nature of advertising. As a matter of fact, advertising is an art of persuasion, concerned with how the advertiser can influence the behavior and value orientation of the general public with his individually unique mentality and perspective. It is an integral branch of mass communication, inextricably intertwined with both art and economics. At the same time, it requires a framework of scientific management. In the course of my studies, I learned to exploit another form of language, my advertising designs, to conduct dialogues with my audience and to convey through those work my ideas and perceptions in order to achieve the objective of affecting the recipients psychology and conduct and realizing the value of communication. But I ventured beyond the mere designing of individual advertisements. I also attempted at a series of coordination work that included the planning, execution, solution and effect of advertising. This process helped me to perfect my framework of theoretical conceptions concerning such notions as personal communication, interpersonal communication and mass communication. I immersed myself in a wide variety of advertising courses. By studying advertising, I could feel the joy of thinking and the charm of knowledge.

Advertising is an art more to be practiced than theorized. For my extra-curricular practice, I worked part-time for the WuHan Silver-Horse Advertising Corporation, an advertising agency which enjoys very prestigious reputation in and around WuHan. After being subjected to the most rigorous screening test, I was recruited as one of the five undergraduate students from my university and worked on several projects under the direct leadership of the chief supervisor of the Planning Department. On account of my distinctive notion and original creativity, my design for an advertisement for an automobile maintenance center was adopted, a fact which adequately evinces my professional qualities and tremendous potential. Later, with strong recommendations from my teacher, I worked at a medium-size advertising company in Beijing, responsible for the advertising agent business in the magazine Global Weekly. With the companys support, I participated in a number of designing contests ranging from the 10th Golden Calf Advertising Contest sponsored by the Taiwans China Times, the 2nd Academy Advertising Competition sponsored by China Advertising Association to the Annual CAC Public Welfare Advertising Competition sponsored by the publishing house of International Advertising Magazine. My participation in those events not only brought me important awards but also enabled me to derive much professional knowledge from the exchange and cooperation with other staff, apart from enhancing my hands-on ability and practical problem-solving skills.

I took part consecutively in two authoritative Competitions for Young Advertisers, which aroused my attention to the discrepancies in the advertising level and the advertising consciousness between Taiwan and mainland China as well as the disparity in the advertising management. In order to call the serious attention of Chinas advertising industry to those problems, I published a full-length academic paper entitled On the Eve of WTO Accession: A Perspective on the Present Conditions of Advertising Management on Mainland China on the website of China Advertising Communication and Research (this website is launched by XiaMen University, the first university in China to have established an Advertising Department and which enjoys a very high academic prestige).

Historically speaking, Chinas advertising industry can only be described as underdeveloped compared with that of the advanced Western countries. Although Chinas advertising industry is achieving remarkable development around the turn of the century, challenges and obstacles are equally serious. For instance, the relationship between the client, the media and the advertising company has not been properly established. The advertising agent system and the relevant legal regulations of advertising are not fully developed. The awareness of self-discipline is weak within this profession and a sound system of social supervision over unlawful advertising practices is lacking.

With Chinas immediate accession into WTO, Chinas overall advertising industry will face severe challenges presented by major international advertising agencies. On the other hand, China promises a bright and alluring prospect in advertising industry as China has the largest advertising market among the developing countries. The profit of the advertising industry maintains an annual growth rate of 39.73. Such a growth momentum is sufficient to indicate the tremendous dimension and the exciting prospect of Chinas future advertising industry. This situation necessarily calls for the emergence of a large number of highly qualified advertising professionals, especially those who can incorporate both their intimate knowledge of Chinas domestic advertising market and international advertising background.

It is precisely against this backdrop that I, equipped with a solid groundwork (at once theoretical and empirical) in the field of advertising acquired from my undergraduate education, wish to apply for a graduate program. My motivation is fairly simple: only the United States, a country with the most unparalleled development in advertising industry and the most prestigious institutions of higher learning in mass communication of which advertising is a part, can offer the necessary environment in which I can mature toward my professional goals.

Now that I have charted my course of action, I am on the verge of proceeding from one point of my life to another point. To return to my metaphor of the alphabet D, I have decided to relinquish the effortless straight line in favor of the beautiful curve, for I believe that whatever the turns and twists alongside it, it will ultimately lead to my prescribed ideal. The profound truth inherent in it has already been given the most poetical pronunciation by the poet Robert Frost at the conclusion of his The Road Not Taken: Two roads diverged in the wood, and I – / I took the one less traveled by / And that has made all the difference.