Ioannis comes from Greece and is currently studying MSc Marine Policy at Cardiff University. His Postgraduate Taught Scholarship has significantly contributed to his ability to complete his studies without having to use up personal time and energy on part-time work.
Can you tell us a little bit about the programme in your own words?
“There are many alternatives available to someone who is attending at the MSc in Marine Policy course. It is mainly vocationally oriented to its students, but a theoretical alternative is not excluded. The course primarily deals with seaborne trade and the regulations that are imposed by the international organizations as well as the financial aspects that traders need to take into consideration in order to avoid mistakes and make as many as well aimed decisions of strategic nature as possible.A series of guest lectures have taken place since the beginning of the course for the logistics department as a whole. The most interesting one as far as the shipping sector is concerned was given by the widely accredited economist Martin Stopford and was conducted by Dr. Kiriaki Mitroussi. Last but not least, the lectures deal with specialized information in the industry by providing new knowledge to students regardless of the background that anybody might possess.”
What did the Postgraduate Taught Scholarship mean to you?
“The Postgraduate Taught Scholarship that was provided by the university was extremely important for me and is significantly contributing to the completion of my postgraduate studies. Coming from Greece a country which has been under a serious economic crisis over the past years, it was not possible for me to cover the total amount of my student expenses by myself. The scholarship provided by the university gave me the opportunity to focus my personal time and energy upon my studies and avoid undergoing exhausting and intensive full time work along with my student obligations.”
Have you been able to secure funding from other places, how else are you supporting your studies?
“Apart from the scholarship that the university provided me, I have been living the last couple years in the US where I was obliged to work overtime in more than one jobs in order to save enough money and cover the needed amount that was necessary for my postgraduate studies. By having made use to some of the alternative choices for part time work that the university offers, I have already registered under the JobShop service that is provided to students”
What were your motivations for undertaking a postgraduate degree?
“Firstly, it was my love for knowledge that drove me to continue into a further specialization of my studies. In addition, apart from the fact that the shipping industry consists of an interesting and challenging sector, what makes it more important is that through its history it has helped humanity develop and evolve to the complex societies of our modern age.
“As Mr. Stopford pointed out through his guest lecture in our school, “99% of the materials around us have been transferred by a ship.” What is more, my scientific background is focused on finance and strategy. In strategy cautious decisions are essential to be taken in order to create entities that will be sustainable and able to exist over time. Since antiquity, the same principles were applied in seaborne trade; this is why I find it a so interesting and fascinating field. My tutors played an important role on helping me apprehend in a higher and more professional level the aspects that affect this particular sector.”
Why did you decide to do your postgraduate degree at Cardiff?
“According to the research that I had previously done Cardiff University was listed between my top choices among the other alternatives. As an EU student, comparing it to other universities in the UK, the EU and the US, Cardiff was offering a high and competitive quality of education, combined with a relatively lower demand for tuition and residency fees”
Is there anything about your postgraduate course that has stood out in your experience?
“Being able to study, live and interact with so many people from so many parts of the world consisted of a significantly unique experience that made me understand how the world functions ecumenically and in a way feel more human.”
What do you think of Cardiff as a place to live as a postgraduate?
“Cardiff obtains the advantages of a European Capital and almost none of its disadvantages such as traffic, overpopulation or expensive way of life. What is more, somebody can combine a lot of things as it is a peaceful and beautiful place with a variety of different activities.”
How do you think your postgraduate course will contribute to your future career plans?
“By specializing my studies in the shipping sector I would desire to exercise my skills and knowledge by working under a shipping company. More specifically, I am interested in the energy and liner shipping.”
Has studying for a postgraduate degree at Cardiff University lived up to your expectations?
“The high quality of studying and level of teaching have totally met my expectations. Moreover, studying and expressing my ideas under a foreign language has proved to be really challenging.”
What are your biggest achievements as a postgraduate student at Cardiff University so far?
“I am not sure if the following can be considered as achievements. If we take into consideration the essays that I have been assigned so far, from what my colleagues have informed me I have probably received the highest mark in the core module of our course by receiving a distinction. As for the rest assignments in the rest modules of my course I received satisfying grades in general, except for one module that I did not go as well as I was expecting to. Currently, I am preparing my dissertation proposal and trying to receive as much knowledge as possible over the sector by making use of the high-level databases that the university offers.”
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