Ana-Teodora Kurkina (MA 2013; since 2014 PhD Student, Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich/University of Regensburg).
Both CEU and the History Department occupied the most prominent place in my life for one year, during which I had very little sleep and very much to read. Looking back at this intense scholarly experience, I realize that I profited from the one-year MA program in more ways than I had ever anticipated. Initially, I expected to find an excellent scholarly community and to benefit from the knowledge and skills of both my professors and fellow-students, but I also found brilliant mentors and extraordinary colleagues, whose advice I still value greatly and whose support helped me to continue my path at a Ph.D. level.
The variety of courses and the challenging, but extremely gratifying process of research production changed my approach to academic writing and to my discipline in general. Now I write less (which is a positive thing, as I have discovered) and focus on the aspects of my research that truly matter. The CEU MA program helped me meet the requirements of the German Ph.D. system and eventually adapt.
At CEU I have developed my linguistic skills and acquired an interest in social history that I continue to pursue up to this day. Finally, during my studies in Budapest, I could fully appreciate the incredible, creative atmosphere of the vibrant international community of students and professors, who surrounded me. For me, CEU remains a miniature scholarly universe – surprising in its diversity and rich in the unique experiences it can offer.