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MA Criminal Justice Civil Rights African Women

April 17, 2016


I am a young woman and an attorney from Cameroon with dreams of building a career in the defense of the human and civil rights of African women both those who have immigrated to the West and those who remain in Africa. I am also a survivor of sexual assault and domestic violence that lasted over a period of years. This experience has left me angry and highly motivated to protect and advocate for other women, particularly African women.

I was awarded permanent residency in the USA in 2008, not long after completing my Bachelor’s Degree in Law in my native Cameroon in 2007. Like most recent immigrants from Africa, I faced an uphill economic struggle from the beginning. This helps to explain why, despite the fact that I was exuberant and proud to have been accepted to the MS Program in Criminal Justice at XXXX in 2012, I made the decision to withdraw after only one week in order to enroll in and complete the Paralegal Certificate Program at XXXX University, a certificate that I now hold.

For the past 5 years, I have supported myself working as a personal care assistant and this has enabled me to gain invaluable social and communication skills and learn a lot about American society. I have also worked with clients suffering from chronic mental problems and I have gained valuable experience in that domain as well, maturing a great deal on a human level, especially as a result of my intense interaction in times of crises with not only the client but their families as well. Communicating in American English with one person at a time was never something that I found difficult. Communicating effectively with several American’s all talking at the same time in the context of mental illness and family crisis, however, has been much more challenging.

I now ask for a second chance from the academic community to earn my Master’s Degree in Criminal Justice. I have taken a lot of time to study Master’s programs in CJ and I see your program at XXXX as the pinnacle, flagship Criminal Justice program in the country. I also want to attend XXXX University because it has the most diverse student body in the country. Finally, XXU is ideal for someone like me who is most interested in progressive social causes, particularly those that are related to criminal justice.

I want to devote my professional life to protecting African women like myself from violence and discrimination. I hope to build a special research base and eventually publish about African women, both immigrants to the West and those still in Africa. My short term goal after completing your program is to gain additional professional experience working in corrections, as a rape victim advocate, helping rape survivors, and, ultimately, to find a position working with an international human rights organization dedicated to waging war against sexual violence on an international level, in Africa as well as here in America.

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