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Petition for Residency- Edit Me !!!

December 18, 2009

So part of my petition for residency is a statement of intent. The prompt asked me why I came to Colorado, proof that I intend to make a permanent life here and have done so, what my academic plans are, and what my future is in Colorado.

Here’s my first draft….so all sorts of errors I’m sure. If the online homesteading, blogging, horseback riding, chicken loving community wants to help me edit the hell out of this thing, that’d be great. I’ve read your blogs. I know you’re good writers…

Here goes…

*Bolded words are obviously changed to protect the innocent…

I graduated from the University of Southern California on May 16, 2008. The next day I left California for good.  I drove to Colorado and haven’t looked back. I came to Colorado to pursue my dream job and dream life of working and living on a ranch in the mountains and realized that dream at The Ranch in G-Town, Co. For the past year and a half I’ve lived here, worked here, paid taxes here, and established community ties here. I’ve attended high school football games and baby showers here. I have a City Market card here. Furthermore, I’ve severed legal ties with the state of California. I now have a Colorado driver’s license and am registered to vote in Colorado. Initially, I was going to wait until my driver’s license expired in 2011 before I renewed it in Colorado but my feeling of allegiance toward Colorado and my pride for being a Coloradan was so great that I wanted my name and picture next to “Colorado”;I wanted people to know I was a Colorado resident whenever I showed my ID. Living in Colorado has exceeded all my expectations and though I was always certain about the move the last year and a half have left me without any doubt that Colorado is my true home and where I belong.

I did not come to Colorado to go to school. I came here to follow my dream of living and working on a ranch, which I’ve done for a year and half. Although initially I though I’d be happy to work on the ranch forever I started to miss academia and yearned to go back to school to pursue a graduate degree in Literature. My research revealed that Colorado State University was the best choice for pursuing my academic goals. I want to write a thesis dealing with a very specialized subject matter. I spoke with Mary Leory in the Literature Department and she was very enthusiastic about my academic project and explained that the Lit. Department had a unique program that would support my goals.

However, my undergraduate work in Communication and Art, not Literature. I’ve spoken with Mary Leory and Alice Kants in the Literature Department about the best way to overcome this handicap in order to successfully apply to the graduate program and it was recommended that I first take some upper division undergraduate Literature courses. It was determined that the best way for me to take these courses was through the GUEST program. Since I thought I’d be classified as a resident the cost of taking two additional courses wasn’t really an issue. I’m 23, I make barely above minimum wage, I don’t receive support from my parents, and my understanding is that no financial aid is offered to GUEST students. I just can’t spend $6,000 to take two classes. Since it was strongly recommended that I take these courses, my career at CSU is largely contingent on my ability to pay for them, which I will not be able to do if I don’t receive an in-state status.

I’ve taken all the other necessary steps to successfully apply for the Literature grad program. I’ve been accepted into the GUEST program, I’ve asked professors to save seats for me, I’ve found housing in Ft. Collins, I’ve contacted prior professors for letters of recommendation, and I’ve set a date to take the GRE.

My immediate academic plan is to take Theories of Literary Criticism and Masculinities in Literature through the GUEST program during the Spring ’10 semester. Upon successful application I will begin my graduate course work in Fall ’10 and continue that course work until I earn my Master’s Degree. I intend to fully utilize the Literature program and support system in order to fulfill my ultimate goal of publishing my thesis.

After I graduate, I will either continue my education to get a PhD in order to teach at the University level or I will find a career and home in Colorado.  Living in G-Town has convinced me that small town life is what I ultimately want and I’ve researched the rural areas around Ft. Collins as well as Pagosa Springs, Montrose, and Woodland Park as potential home sites. If I don’t end up teaching I’d like to combine my Communication and Literature degrees and pursue a career in the fields of advertising, publishing, public relations, or media. Hopefully I’ll be able to incorporate my love of the rural lifestyle into a career. I’ve looked into career opportunities at Rodeo News in Ft. Collins, BLM, National Outdoor Leadership School, the Colorado Dude Ranch Association, Country music stations, the institute of sustainable living, etc. etc. (obviously wont say etc. etc….still need to flesh this paragraph out)

My ultimate goal is to  live on a five acre homestead in Pagosa Springs, Co with a couple of horses and some chickens. I’ll be a professor, and a writer, and a rancher. Insert some sort of snazzy closing sentence

So this is he first draft. Obviously it isn’t polished. Is it too emotional? Not emotional enough? Do I hit my most persuasive points? Is it appropriate to add my sob story about being a poor student and NEEDING in state tuition? Too long? Should I focus more on how I’ve already proven I’m a Colorado resident?  Unclear as to why some parts are there?  Writing style- more consice and focused or more emotionally appealing…is it a confusing mixture of both right now? Would you let me in?

4 Comments leave one →
  1. December 19, 2009 6:05 pm

    I would make sure when stating your ultimate goal, that it persuasively shows how you will contribute to Colorado financially after you goals are achieved. (i.e. why they should help you now, because you’ll pay them back in spades.) I’d list what your previous goals have been, in a business like manner, and when or how they were achieved.
    (See, I do what I say I’ll do, you can trust me!)

    It sounds like a job application. Go professional all the way, and then add a short personal paragraph on why it matters so much to you that it’s Colorado, not any other state. They are going to want to know they are investing in a future earning resident and taxpayer. 🙂
    ? Just some thoughts….

    • goamwat permalink*
      December 21, 2009 2:52 am

      Excellent advice :). Thanks a bunch…am working on round 2 right now.

  2. BirdieNumNum permalink
    December 22, 2009 9:08 am

    I think it needs to be far less emotional, especially the first paragraph and a half… it sounds like you wrote it from the heart, and I know that’s being earnest, but that much idealism is probably not what they’re looking for and they may not even believe it — the people reading that application don’t really know you. It’d be good to focus more focus on the concrete examples of how you intend to make a living there (like the research into your future career prospects, which you’ve mentioned) . Also, I would outline what exactly that “very specialized subject matter” is 😛
    Otherwise, it’s very solid. The part about not being able to pay $6000 for two courses is perfectly reasonable! Good god, that’s over $1000 more than it costs me to take a full year’s worth of courses here in my Canadian university (which is what it would cost for any resident/citizen from anywhere in the entire country). And I still bitch and moan about having to pay tuition unlike people from smarter countries like in Europe.
    When do you need to hand this in?

    • goamwat permalink*
      December 22, 2009 2:10 pm

      It’s due Dec. 28th, but I’ll be turning it in the 26th or 27th. Thanks for the advice. I also think it borders on too emotional. I’ll also definitely be expanding on more concrete examples of what I plan to do here…list exact positions at jobs and where they located so whoever reads this knows that damnit, I did my research!

      Ack this whole thing is so stupid!!!!! I can’t imagine that they could deny me once they see my paperwork. I HAVE ESTABLISHED PERMANENCY! I mean, my HORSE has been here long enough to qualify. Sheesh.

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