The Journey</br>To My Success

The Journey
To My Success

Kalliopi Koutsikou:
"Success is doing what you really love"

In high school, I was among many who had not yet decided what they wanted to study

In high school, I was among many who had not yet decided what they wanted to study. For this reason, I chose to study Law, having in mind that this degree can offer many options in the future. It’s an ‘octopus degree’, as I usually call it, because it expands everywhere, in all sectors. You can pursue a career in courts, in a law firm, in the banking or shipping sector, in the public sector – and if you combine it with a postgraduate degree – you can do almost anything.

I disliked how the professors in Greek Universities are so distant from their students that they don’t even know their names


In my final year of high school, I decided to follow the field of Law but I was still unsure as to which University I should go to. I was feeling like I wouldn’t fit in how universities operate in Greece. I disliked how the professors are so distant from their students that they don’t even know their names. I was also prevented by the exams needed to be admitted to a Greek University. I didn’t want to go through exhausting studying and face the fear of failing. There is always a chance, however hard you study, to not get admitted at the University of your preference, and end up doing something else or repeating the entire procedure the following year. I had a friend studying here, so when this alternative option popped up, I started doing my research on universities in Cyprus.

Frederick University‘s student-centric approach won me over, as the teaching staff was close to the students, and my friends who studied here confirmed that the education offered is of high quality. I checked that my degree would be equivalent to one acquired in Athens so I chose to not even go through the national exam for the Greek Universities. The opportunity to study what I choose in an environment that offers you not only academic knowledge but also the conditions to develop is what I was looking for.

I am a person who likes to dig in and expand my knowledge constantly

Today, I am a fourth-year student and I feel I did the right choice. Frederick University’s faculty members are always there for us, willing to support us, with a friendly and personal approach. You might email them and they will instantly reply most helpfully. What I also liked is the fact that everything is very well organized. It was proven during the pandemic when everything ran smoothly and there was no instructional time lost. During that period, I went through a health issue and I was not able to take my exams. Eventually, I had to take all my exams together. During that difficult period my professors Dr Ioannis Revolides and Dr Vasiliki Karagkouni, who is also my advisor, stood by me. I was moved by their concern. It is highly important, as a teacher to not only be knowledgeable but also empathetic. Besides these two, I also admire Dr Katerina Sykioti, Dr Demetris Devetzi, Dr Takis Degleri, Dr Eleni Micha, and Dr Konstantinos Kouroupis. You can learn a lot from the excellent academic staff and broaden your horizons.

The opportunities for non-academic activities were also quite important to me. I like to dig in and expand my knowledge constantly. I talked to my professor Dr Vasiliki Karagkouni and told her that I would be really interested in participating in educational and volunteering programs, that the University organizes from time to time. At some point, she approached me and told me that Marangopoulos Foundation for Human Rights launched an annual competition for undergraduate and postgraduate students studying at Universities in Greece and Cyprus. Human rights are a topic that has always been of interest to me so she didn’t have to tell me twice!

My participation at the Marangopoulos Foundation was truly a precious experience

The topic I chose was “Τhe environmental case-law of the European Court of Human Rights”. In my paper, I highlighted how environmental issues are combined with the European court. Eventually, my paper won one of the competition’s three awards! II was presented the award by the Vice-president of the Marangopoulos Foundation and Dean at the University of Athens’ Law Department, Dr Linos Alexandre Sicilianos. I was also awarded a scholarship to participate in the International Summer School in Strasbourg titled “International Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian and Criminal Law”. It was a really interesting program that taught me a lot. An honestly precious experience that I got to share with students from all around the world.

Being passionate about what you do is a prerequisite to both succeed and be happy

Starting now in my last semester, I feel that I am capable enough to make decisions for the future. The only “issue” is that I like a lot of things and I still do not know what to choose. I will certainly go for an internship at a law firm and then for a master, but I still haven’t concluded on what course to follow.

I believe that to succeed it is important to set goals, improve yourself every single day and move on. Success is to do what you really love. If you do not feel passionate about what you do, then you can’t be dedicated enough. For me, that’s a prerequisite, in order to be successful and happy as well. And that’s what success is all about.

Kalliopi 1