I am going to apply for PhD in Cancer Cell Biology at West Virginia University. But before starting my application, I have come across a confusing problem. At WVU, the PhD in Cancer Cell Biology is offered under the umbrella of the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program along with other six departments.

So, in my Statement of Purpose, which one of the following statements should be written:

  1. I am applying to the PhD program in Cancer Cell Biology offered by the Biomedical Sciences Graduate Program at West Virginia University.............,


  1. I am applying to the PhD program in Biomedical Sciences at West Virginia University.............

Need some valuable suggestions. Thanks in advance.


Your best resource for all such questions is an internet search. Find the website of the uni you are applying to and find their admissions method page. They will often have a variety of useful resources. They might even have on-line forms you can copy, or even example application letters.

Another possible thing is, search out the admin assistant to the head of grad studies in the place you want to attend. This person will be handling most of the correspondence for the Great Person, who is unlikely to be reading their own mail unless it is put in front of them. The admin assistant will be able to answer questions, and will be used to getting a lot of nervous questions from applying students who don't know such details. They will be quite patient with such things, especially in cases where people may be applying from other cultures or other languages, so mundane details will be confusing.

Be very nice to all admin staff in the uni. They can save your life.

  • 1
    +1 for the last sentence. It applies not only to students but also to faculty (including postdocs). Aug 13 at 2:10
  • Thank you very much....
    – B.S.
    Aug 13 at 3:49

Either will do. The second is shorter, so the reader gets to the important content sooner.

  • 1
    Yes, and the reader will know about the organizational structure.
    – Buffy
    Aug 11 at 11:03
  • Thank you very much...........
    – B.S.
    Aug 11 at 17:06

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