본문으로 바로가기

NEWS
BACK TO LIST

[KDIS in the Spotlight] From KDI School to UC Santa Barbara - A Ph.D. Journey in Sociology (Bomi Kim, 2020 MPP)

  • Date 2024-05-23 09:30
  • CategoryStory
  • Hit509

Since KDI School’s founding, KDIS graduate students have spread worldwide across various policy, economic, and social sectors. Some find themselves in governmental roles, NGOs and IGOs, and the private sector, to name a few. Additionally, many graduates pursue further studies, obtaining their Ph.Ds. from prestigious universities worldwide. Today, we have the pleasure of speaking with Bomi Kim, who recently secured admission to one of the world's top-ranking universities, the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Please introduce yourself.

Hello, everyone! I am Bomi Kim from South Korea. I received a master’s degree in public policy at KDI School (2020 Fall). I am currently studying on Seoul National University’s Sociology Doctoral Program. This Spring, I have also been admitted to the University of California, Santa Barbara Doctoral Program in Sociology, which will start this Fall.

Gloria (Reporter): Wow!! Congratulations!!

Bomi: Thank you!

Please tell us more about your Ph.D. program in the US? Are you excited? How did you do it? Have you always wanted to study for a Ph.D. at UC?

Honestly, I hadn't considered pursuing a Ph.D. before going to KDIS. Before starting the master’s program, I planned to pursue my career as a researcher in the National Research Complex or other research centers related to my major after receiving my master’s degree. However, the education experiences in KDIS have drawn me to imagine more and pursue the next steps in my research career. 

I will study sociology, not only because I double-majored in child development and family studies & sociology as a bachelor’s degree but also because of the subjects that I would like to study for my doctoral program. I am interested in studying the evolution of diverse family structures and the subsequent shifts in family demographics. Specifically, I focus on investigating the societal impact of institutionalizing diverse family forms and their effects on the health of individuals in social minorities. I thought sociology would be the best fit for studying and researching these topics, so I applied for a Ph.D. program in sociology.

After making the decision to apply for a doctoral program in sociology in the US, I took English exams as I am an international student and need TOEFL and GRE scores. I also organized the schools that I would apply for, and then had enough time to write a statement of purpose, personal statement, and other documents that are needed to apply. The professors who supervised me at KDIS willingly wrote recommendation letters for me, which I appreciate the most. After submitting all the materials, it was time to wait for the admission letters. 

As I mentioned above, my research interests encompass family formation, diverse family structures, gender and sexuality, and health. Therefore, I would best fit in a place where liberal values, diversity, and inclusion are guaranteed. California is one of the places, and UC is strong in the subjects that I am interested in. Therefore, I applied to UC schools, and I am very excited to be admitted to UC Santa Barbara. 

How did you feel when you received the news of your Ph.D. admission?

After submitting all the applications, I couldn't sleep well because of the time difference between the US and South Korea. Usually, the emails from the US arrive at midnight in South Korea, and I didn't want to miss the moment. However, one night that I went to sleep earlier than usual, the admission email from UCSB arrived in my mailbox (it was 3:07 AM), and the morning when I found it, I was so thrilled and couldn't believe it!

Please tell us how your education experience and time at KDIS helped you in securing your Ph.D. admission at the University of California, Santa Barbara?

I think the courses I have taken (such as Quantitative Methods, Impact Evaluation, Korea's Microdata Analytics for Public Policy, Gender and Development, and Econometrics), my research experience in the Impact Evaluation Lab, and my master’s thesis helped me the most during the application process. 

Finally, what advice do you have for KDIS students who are aspiring to further their studies in the US or anywhere around the world?

In my opinion, finding your research questions is most important for applying to a Ph.D. program or further studies. I have just been admitted to the doctoral program and am still struggling with finding "good research questions", but finding your own and persuading others why the questions are important and valuable is the first step. It is also the contents that you will write in your statement of purpose or personal statement when you apply for a doctoral program. In addition, taking courses that can link to your research interests is also important. Research experiences and outputs, such as research lab experience, degree thesis, or published papers, would help to prove your research capacity.


profile
TUKAMWESIGA, Gloria

2024 Spring / MDP / Uganda

Related News



Most Read