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Sunday, March 6, 2016

Letter Of Intent

The first time I wrote a Letter of Intent, I looked up samples and hints so that I could write a “correct” letter. The result of following those templates left me with the feeling that I had faked it. Not by adding in any false information or by stretching the truth about myself, but rather by looking at the Letter and feeling that I was not portraying “me”. What I intend to do for this letter is to let the information flow freely: Who am I? What qualifications do I have for a doctorate? Why do I want to pursue a doctorate? What do I intend to do with a doctorate?
I am an older student (age 47). I have kicked about in life somewhat: four years in the Marine Corps, an IT career of eight years, running my own business for eight years, four years of work at a television station, and two years as a security guard. I have to admit of chasing my tail for a few of those years to pay the mortgage, but for the most part, I am satisfied with the work I have done. I took on leadership and management responsibility at most of the companies that I have been employed.
My BA is in Government from the University of Texas at Austin. I was a horrible student, except in the subjects in which I was interested. Twenty years later, I found graduate study to be far more interesting, and I accomplished a 4.0 GPA in a Criminal Justice program with a focus in Homeland Security. I did attend a for-profit, online program at South University, and I understand that there is a negative perception of such schools in the academic community. I did some research and wrote an overview of my experience, to which I will provide a link. A minor research interest of mine is in the quality of criminal justice education, and the difference between traditional and online programs. I did present at the 2015 ASC meeting, but I flubbed the presentation from a combination of over-confidence and under-preparation; I thought I knew the material better than stage fright could prevent me from presenting, and I was wrong.
My presentation, “The Effects Of Hoover's Bureaucratic Tactics On COINTELPRO Operations: A Comparison Between NEW LEFT and WHITE HATE”, should highlight my primary research interest, which is in studying the effects that politics has on national security and criminal justice. In my opinion, national security and criminal justice share the basic goal of government, which is to protect the citizen. The major concepts in this research area include growth complex, corruption. partisan interest, and rent-seeking. My underlying purpose in seeking a doctorate is in learning the processes for identifying and measuring different causal effects. Human, and thus governmental, action is a multi-variate result, and I would like to be able to describe these causes better than I can now.
I intend on working for a research institute after attaining a doctorate, one that works in the areas of national security and/or criminal justice, and one that works in these areas from a Constitutional perspective. This would be the optimum I could contribute to society. I definitely bring a outsider's perspective to the field. On the other hand, if I can not find such employment, I have no problem teaching. Instructional duties have represented a great part of my responsibilities throughout my career.
Thank you for this opportunity, and I have provided links below:

ASC Paper:

Overview of South University's Program:

LinkedIn Profile:

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