Personal Statement

According to my test report of Entrepreneurial Profile 10 (EP10), Gallup’s newest assessment to identify a person’s entrepreneurial talents, my dominant talent is Risk-Taker. It largely confirmed my autognosis, an ambitious and charismatic man with enthusiasm and positivity when taking on challenges. Supported with some evidence of other talents such as Creative-Thinker, Relationship-Builder, and Business Focus, I only strengthened the self-confidence to pursue an entrepreneurship endeavor as a life-long objective. The dream of starting a technology company demands accumulation in both practical experience and a comprehensive knowledge base that help me to turn an idea to business. To bridge the gap, firstly I need to broaden knowledge structure through a master’s degree, and after graduate education I would join a middle-sized start-up company to engage in the team-based design and development of specific technology products.

Holding a clear vision about the future career, I’ve expanded my curriculum beyond the major of Industrial Engineering, to such areas as economics, accounting, marketing, programming, and operational research models. Equipped with a broadened horizon in business world, I’m capable of analyzing other effect factors in a business project apart from manufacturing process and technologies. Meanwhile, I registered a Certificate Program in Entrepreneur and Innovation under the School of Management. A portfolio of courses and experiential programs enabled me to create economic and social value with my expertise and eventually to turn creative ideas into action. Through team-based projects, I applied knowledge and skills to developing business ventures with real-world potential. One example could be a venture program named IndyBus, which I initiated to provide innovative bus services to Purdue Community. As the Chief Marketing Officer, I collaborated with other management roles including CFO, CEO, CIO, and Logistics Manager on offering popular bus trips. Based on market research and competitor analysis, we decided to provide riders with the right to choose and reserve seats, with food and WIFI, with special bus decorations, as well as with late night safety and convenience. With carefully-designed prices and a series of marketing events, the bus tickets and additional services incomes were estimated to achieve positive revenue. The first mock venture program gave me a close contact with many aspects of launching a business, while leading new directions for me to explore.

Outside of campus, I also take an active part in internships to gain valuable experience in industry. Through past internships in manufacturing companies, I’ve witnessed how different departments collaborated to achieve three fundamental goals, i.e. progress control, quality control, and cost control, in a specific project. For example, as an intern at Quality Inspection Department, I took advantage of my technical background to understand relevant operating principles and mastered the basic standards of quality inspection on bought-in components in short time. Though tedious and highly repetitive, this process was a crucial step to ensure the safety or quality of our products. After work, I also curiously consulted senior technicians about various quality control methods during and at the end of the production line. It provided the best on-the-job training to strengthen my technical knowledge, whereas my latest internship provided an excellent platform to improve soft skills including coordination, negotiation, and communication across teams. Engaged in a team project that worked on producing a 7-millon-dollar earth pressure balance tunnel boring machine, I was firstly assigned to Assembly Workshop. Challenges were much more complicated than I thought. Suppliers were not always able to deliver on time, which could cause changes to the original production plan. When my project manager shaped an adjusted plan to meet our progress requirement, I would immediately contact relevant departments and help them calculate the amount of extra-needed human resources or working hours. Besides, problems often occurred in assembly process. To solve them, consorted efforts from supportive departments like Designing, Production, and Purchase were demanded, and thus good coordination skills played an important role. Given my competence in coordination and in maintaining good interpersonal relationship, the Project Manager asked me to support some of the after-sales services. The job further honed my communicative capacity and patience in workplace. In retrospect, the valuable internship experiences have paved me the way to gain the strengths to lead a team and control a project.

Aiming at becoming a future industry leader and entrepreneur, I’ve always been looking for the right master’s program that matches my learning and professional needs, namely to enhance the knowledge structure in engineering management and the insights in leadership and entrepreneurship. To my great delight, your Master of Science program in Management Science and Engineering offers exactly what I need. The Program enjoys first-class educational resources from several prestigious schools and departments at Columbia University, equipping me with a multi-disciplinary way of thinking. Such courses as Supply Chain Management, Advanced Corporate Finance, Managerial Negotiations, and Marketing Research will best facilitate me to combine my background knowledge in technology with management theories as well as practical issues facing the development of a technical enterprise. I’m enthusiastic to broaden my horizon in the approaches to help launch sustainable and influential technology programs through the courses like Data-Driven Entrepreneurship, Demand and Supply Analytics, and Dynamic Pricing and Revenue Management.

Apart from benefiting from the curriculum and professional resources at this Program, I shall contribute to the class by helping them understand more about the present development of China’s manufacturing industry, sharing such information and insights as the working conditions, development bottlenecks, and widely-adopted operating methods. I’m sure that the learning experience at Columbia University will be particularly rich and interesting.