I have received five inquiries from prospective PhD students from Bangladesh. These emails are not making a positive impression. Please keep the following points in mind:
- I am not a man. Beginning your email with "Dear Sir" is not advised. Perhaps you do not have any female engineering professors in your university. Perhaps you have never heard of a female engineering professor and the possibility of their existence has just not occurred to you. This is understandable. However, be advised that there are a number of female engineering professors in the US. Starting your email with "Dear Sir" is likely to annoy roughly 1 out of 10 US professors, as they will in fact be female. "Dear Sir or Madam" is not a large improvement, as we rarely use this form of address in American English. The correct form of address is "Dear Professor (Last Name)".
- Sending email to every single professor at my university/in the US is unlikely to help. I receive many emails from students who have relevant undergraduate backgrounds in my subject area and related research experience at the undergraduate or masters level. I read these emails with interest. In contrast, a vague email indicating that you are a student in my general discipline and want to do a PhD, without any indication that you are interested in my specific field or are familiar with my research, is not likely to get my attention. Worst of all is to say that you want to do a PhD in "soil mechanics, biomedical engineering, or VLSI design," as these are in three completely different departments and make it sound like you are desperate to do a PhD in anything at all. If you want your email to be read carefully, you must make a convincing case for why the person you are writing should specifically be interested in your background and qualifications, as they relate to that professor’s research. For example, on my faculty web page under "Information for Prospective Students", I have outlined what prior education, skills, and experience are relevant to my research program.
- Try to build connections. If no one from your university has ever gone to study in the US, you may need to improve your connections. Consider doing a masters degree first. See if you can find a university in your country or region that will take you for a masters degree, and also has good connections with the US. For example, some foreign universities have summer internship or exchange programs with US universities, or have faculty who have studied in the US, Canada, or Europe. Your chance of getting into a PhD program from such a university will be much higher than if you are coming from an "unknown" (to US professors) university.
- Good luck. I appreciate your effort to build your career and life opportunities. But please, no more spam!