Testimonials

The Olympia Summer Academy is a unique educational and academic experience.

Richard English
Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Queen’s University, Belfast

This is the perfect summer school….

Andrea Ruggeri
Professor of International Relations, University of Oxford

This program is a winner.

John Mearsheimer
R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago

Having attended the 2019 Olympia Summer Academy is one of the best choices I have ever made in my academic career. In those ten intensive days I did not only gain in depth knowledge upon issues related to my professional field, but also, met young aspiring professionals with whom I could collaborate in the future. The experts who taught us were the best in their field and very friendly towards the participants, making the whole teaching –learning experience one of a kind. To conclude, I would like to thank wholeheartedly Public Benefit Foundation John S. Latsis for the full scholarship and the amazing opportunity they granted me.

Karina Iskandarova
MA Candidate, University of Maine

The 2019 Olympia Summer Academy provided me with a valuable opportunity to experience a truly amazing academic program with scholars from all around the globe. Having the chance to listen, to learn, and to share in a beautiful venue at the Mediterranean Sea in intellectually rich cycles was easily one of the highlights during my studies so far. The combination of skillful organizers, highly motivated lecturers, and a richly varied student body ensured a pleasant and inspiring atmosphere which I genuinely hope to enjoy again in the years to come.

Peter Wedekind
PhD Candidate, Charles University, Prague

As an “Olympian” I expanded and deepened my knowledge in a variety of serious global issues, such as European security, political violence, and risk analysis. In terms of networking and socializing, the OSA facilitated off-classroom interaction and social happenings which played a crucial role to creating bonds with the participants from all programs. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that by the graduation day we had all become a big family. I would also like to highlight that our professors contributed their utmost in creating a friendly and inspiring atmosphere. I would not have been able to live this magical experience, if I hadn’t received the scholarship from the Public Benefit Foundation John S. Latsis. Lastly, I would like to thank the leading and organizing team of OSA which was tremendously supportive and considerate throughout this journey.

Konstantinos Georgiou
BA Candidate, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

The mentality of the course was unprecedented both in academic and social terms. The interesting topics were taught by inspiring Teachers to committed students. I was feeling member of a dynamic team; the journey of knowledge and full-filling potential were highly valued. The 2017 OSA was an exceptional educational course!

Isidora Tachmatzidi
LLM, King’s College London

OSA is brightly crafted. The experience is utterly rewarding as it unites enthusiastic academics and youth from all over the world. In a very easy-going but professional environment, OSA offered excellent lectures on current international matters allowing me to further expand my knowledge and critical sense.

Joana Araujo Lopes
MA candidate, NOVA University of Lisbon

OSA is the most appreciated educational and networking experience i have had so far. It is delightful that such an organisation is based in Greece and takes full advantage of the pros and beauties of our country combining them with a top quality educational and leisure programme.

Alexandros Marantelos
MSc candidate, University of Copenhagen

OSA was a unique and amazing experience. Organization team was very friendly, helpful and excellent. The cycles have been a great source of information and inspiration. The professors were all very helpful and the lectures were on the highest level. Attending the 2017 Cycle A was amazing experience and gave me an excellent opportunity to learn something new and meet wonderful people from all over the world. It was perfect balance between learning and having so much fun in historical town of Nafplio. If someone is considering the OSA, this is the right place for her/him to spend the one part of the summer. Such a great time!

Tatjana Rakovic
MA candidate, University of Banja Luca, BiH

I completed my PhD last year and have since taken up an academic position at the University of Nottingham Ningbo in China. I do indeed really value the Olympia experience, it was an incredible opportunity. I in particular feel the opportunity it gave me to first present my early research, and the positive and constructive feedback I received, was an essential moment in my development, and greatly helped me in my academic career.

Ruairidh Brown
International Studies tutor, University of Nottingham Ningbo, China

The Olympic Summer Academy provides the perfect combination of an inspiring environment with intellectual conversations and sunny summer weather in a lovely country. It’s a great spot to meet a large variety of interesting people both in lecture halls and at the beach. That’s why I highly recommend everyone to apply for this unique summer school!

Cosima Meyer
PhD candidate, University of Mannheim

The Olympia Summer Academy appealed to me as it covers particular subject areas of that I haven’t found on other programs, such as Terrorism and Counterterrorism as well as Religion and International Politics. I have found those courses particularly useful as they have helped me look at challenges in a different way and have armed me with new skills and knowledge in how to understand better the current developments on international level. I enjoyed the different perspectives and new angle that the Professors brought in order to tackle traditional subjects. Last but not least, the networking was a significant asset and the student-based approach of the Professors helped the development of a super friendly atmosphere. To sum up, it was a wonderful and unforgettable experience that I will always cherish and recall with a feeling of joy and appreciation!

Foteini Karakatsani
Deputy Head, Head of the Consular Department , Greek Embassy in Tallinn, Estonia

Having been involved with the Olympia Summer Seminars from the outset, I can say that it is a magical and transformative life experience for everyone who takes part. Talented faculty and a diverse student body combine to bring the highest level of academic rigor to classroom. And the time set aside for informal conversations and group activities creates intellectual friendships for life. The seminar is now firmly established as the “go-to” summer experience for students wanting to deepen their knowledge of conflict studies, identity politics and political risk. It is a great honor to be part of the Olympia family and help carry the tradition forward.

Dr. Kristin Fabbe
Assistant Professor, Harvard Business School, Business, Government and International Economy Unit

Ten days in the Peloponnese was a reminder of what is important in life: the pursuit of knowledge; fine dining, in particular old goat; morning swims from the Albanian beach; and the company of intellectually curious and fun-loving people. Teaching alongside Stathis Kalyvas was a tremendous privilege.

Emma Sky
Senior Fellow, Jackson Institute for Global Affairs & Director, Maurice R. Greenberg World Fellows Program, Yale University

This is the perfect summer school, I wish I was a graduate student again to attend it. Constant intellectual engagement through the day in a breathtaking location.
I learnt a lot and had an amazing time with sharp students and top scholars.

Andrea Ruggeri
Associate Professor of Quantitative Methods in International Relations, University of Oxford

The Olympia Summer Academy is an exceptional opportunity for students, professionals and academics to engage intensively on questions that matter: What are the sources and processes of armed conflict? How do forms of political violence intersect? How can we study the challenging and sensitive issues of repression, displacement, terrorism, and war? Participation in the Academy will benefit anyone interested in the complexities of the contemporary security environment.

Anastasia Shesterinina
Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Politics/International Politics, Department of Politics, University of Sheffield

The Olympia Summer School Academy is a truly unique opportunity for highly motivated scholars to come together and be exposed to state-of-the-art advances in their field, while enjoying a combination of great weather, cultural immersion, and fun. The interactions between students and teaching staff are completely informal and continue outside the teaching rooms, around a coffee, or by the beach, and this contributes to creating strong and lasting ties.

Petros Sekeris
Associate Professor of Economics, Montpellier Business School, Montpellier, France

OSA is the ideal programme for aspiring academics, graduate students, and those who want to immerse themselves in their studies. I’ve been so impressed by the calibre of students and the discussions we had. New research ideas emerged, career plans solidified and friendships have formed that will last a life time. The balance of study and leisure time in the Greek sunshine was perfect -an incredible experience!

Kieran McConaghy
Lecturer at the Handa Centre for the Study of Terrorism and Political Violence (CSTPV), University of St Andrews

Teaching at OSA on the making and unmaking of the Ottoman Empire was an incredible experience for me.I enjoyed sharing my research on security and emergency in Israel/Palestine and Cyprus in a regional transnational framework. The students were interested and engaged and I learned a lot from the other faculty in the workshop atmosphere as they were truly top of the line in their field. Informal conversations at the beach and breakfast enabled me to share about my own experiences in politics, academia and media and learn about what the students and faculty were interested in. Nafplio is a magical place, perfect for studying the sociology of empires.I can’t think of a better way of regional intellectual engagement that challenges the mind and opens the spirit to new ways of thinking seeing and hopefully making the changes we want to see.Thank you and I hope to come back soon.

Yael Berda
Assistant Professor, Gerard Weinstock Visiting Lecturer on Sociology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Harvard University (winter session 2018)

The Academy is a wonderful experience for students and faculty, learning so much from each other on exciting subjects such as terrorism and political violence, while also enjoying the delights of Greece, including the wonderful sights and the terrific weather! It was an amazing experience that I will never forget!Many thanks again, and it was such a great honor to be invited!

Christian Kaunert
Professor of Policing and Security, University of South Wales

Olympia Summer Academy 2018 was one of the best experiences I had in my whole life. I had the chance to attend courses by world-class professors expanding my knowledge about terrorism and getting extremely useful feedback about my own academic research. Last but not least, I made several wonderful new friends that made everything even better for me and I believe that we will be in touch for many years in the future.

Petros Katopodis
MA Candidate, Panteion University of Athens

My experience of the 2018 Olympia Summer Academy provided me with new lines of inquiry and equipped me with the necessary skills to carry forward my academic endeavor.

Fayaz Kacho
Ph.D. Candidate, School of International Relations, University of St Andrews

The OSA 2015 has been an amazing academic, intellectual and cultural experience. The academic standards are of the highest level, the quality of the lectures is simply superb, and the faculty is outstanding. The exchange of ideas and the academic debate were original, unique and invaluable, whereas the extracurricular activities were exceptional and included a visit to the ancient theatre of Epidaurus in order to watch Ajax by Sophocles, which was a breathtaking experience. The truly multicultural character, the diverse backgrounds of the participants, and the friendships that are established, are just some of the numerous ”weapons” of OSA. The picturesque and historical town of Nafplio, the first capital of modern Greece, constitutes an ideal venue, while the overall organization was just perfect. The OSA is definitely a huge ”winner”, and overall has been a stunning experience I will never forget!!!

Efstathios Tsirmpas
M.Sc. cand., Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh

Wonderfully organised and with perfectly tailored academic cycles, the 2015 Olympia Summer Academy provided great insights that challenged established conceptions. It also served as a wonderful platform for exchange of ideas between participants and faculty in a friendly atmosphere and at the picturesque setting of Nafplio!

Olesia Kompaniiets
Ph.D. cand., Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv

OSA was a truly worthwhile experience. What a fantastic networking and knowledge sharing opportunity in a beautiful setting! The lecturers are very passionate about their fields of expertise and the OSA team did a great job at taking care of us (and were loads of fun too). I would definitely recommend attending the OSA to International Relations enthusiasts.

Viki Ferreira
Practising Attorney, Notary & Conveyancer, South Africa

I would start by saying that, as everyone, I naturally had expectations and a vague idea of what it would be like to spend ten days at the Olympia Summer Academy, thanks to a friend’s testimony from last year’s OSA. However, I was surprised in a positive way. Any modest expectations I had before arriving to one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever been to, were greatly exceeded in all respects. This amazing human team that represents the soul and core of the organization, managed to find the perfect balance that every student dreams of: lectures with high academic level and fun social extracurricular activities. Somehow and for some reason, the organizers were able to gather an incredible and diverse group of students from different parts of the world, backgrounds, ages, but with the same interests and positive energy. As a result, I avail myself to affirm that this has been one of the most enriching experiences, not only academically speaking but also personally.

Fabian Ybarra
M.A. cand., King’s College London

The Olympia Summer School 2010 has been an intense and wonderful opportunity to make progress in my research.

Sara Pavan
Researcher and Teaching Assistant, Institute of Social Studies

It was an exciting experience. All in all, the summer school created an opportunity for learning and making friends with lots of fun!

Sindu Workneh Kebede
Doctoral Student, German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), Department of International Economics

Olympia summer seminars is a truly special experience. The academic quality of the seminars is outstanding but the value of people coming there is even greater. All of this, combined with the harmony of the ancient Olympia site make you think of coming back again and again.

Victor Cebotari
Post-doctoral Researcher, Faculty of Arts and Social Science, Maastricht University

Olympia was an invaluable intellectual and cultural experience. The seminars have been a great source of inspiration as well as an opportunity to meet wonderful persons both academically and personally. The fact that we were able to attend and be active during class the mornings after speaks lots about how interesting the lectures and workshops were and how brilliant were the presenters. I continue to look back at the materials and remember the discussions from time to time in my conflict prevention work at the OSCE.

Chema Arraiza
Senior Legal Adviser, Office of the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities, The Hague, The Netherlands

The professors were all very helpful and approachable and made an effort to point out to individual students how the course discussions related back to their research topics.

Kai Thaler
Researcher, Centre for Social Science Research, University of Cape Town

Attending the 2011 program on the “History & Philosophy of IR” was a most rewarding experience and gave me an excellent opportunity to teach highly skilled and motivated students. Striking the right balance between ’summer’ and ’school’, the Olympia experience is intensive. Coffee breaks and excursions were great opportunities to continue exchanging opinions on the issues presented during the morning sessions. The Olympia summer school has a very well structured program and is characterized by a stimulating and friendly atmosphere.

Knud Erik Jørgensen
Professor of International Relations, Aarhus University, Denmark

The summer school on the “History and Philosophy of International Relations” is a wonderful learning experience for students who want to know more about how the world works. The organizers do a terrific job organizing the various sessions and making sure that the lectures and discussion are interesting and informative. Olympia also provides an ideal environment for talking about international politics in a relaxed atmosphere. This program is a winner.

.John Mearsheimer
R. Wendell Harrison Distinguished Service Professor of Political Science, University of Chicago

I taught at the 2012 summer program on the “History & Philosophy of IR” and it was a wonderful experience. Dr. Gofas and his colleagues designed an excellent program, and they put it into practice extremely well. The young scholars who participated in the school were bright and engaged, and I thoroughly enjoyed my interactions. This is what all teaching should be like! And set on a magical historical site—what more could one want?

Christian Reus-Smit
Professor of International Relations, European University Institute

If you are considering a summer school on political violence or IR theory for 2015 and beyond, I know of no better place than the Olympia Summer Academy, at which I just had a wonderful experience, both academically and personally, learning much and making many new friends. A big thanks to my gracious hosts Andreas Gofas, Stathis Kalyvas, Dimitris Keridis and the rest of the Olympia team for ten memorable days in Thucydides’ land!

Nuno Monteiro
Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science, Yale University

The 2012 summer program on the “History & Philosophy of IR” was an immersive experience that topped, for faculty and students alike, just about anything we might have experienced in our scholarly pursuits. For four days, we dug into challenging material with an energy and intensity rarely matched in other settings for more than brief intervals. Superb organization, an idyllic location, students with diverse backgrounds, and plenty of off-duty face-time made the experience even more memorable.

Nicholas Onuf
Professor, Associado de Relações Internationais, Emeritus of International Relations, Florida International University, Pontifica Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro

The OSA 2015 has been an amazing academic, intellectual and cultural experience. The academic standards are of the highest level, the quality of the lectures is simply superb, and the faculty is outstanding. The exchange of ideas and the academic debate were original, unique and invaluable, whereas the extracurricular activities were exceptional and included a visit to the ancient theatre of Epidaurus in order to watch Ajax by Sophocles, which was a breathtaking experience. The truly multicultural character, the diverse backgrounds of the participants, and the friendships that are established, are just some of the numerous ”weapons” of OSA. The picturesque and historical town of Nafplio, the first capital of modern Greece, constitutes an ideal venue, while the overall organization was just perfect. The OSA is definitely a huge ”winner”, and overall has been a stunning experience I will never forget!!!

Efstathios Tsirmpas
M.Sc. cand., Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh

Wonderfully organised and with perfectly tailored academic cycles, the 2015 Olympia Summer Academy provided great insights that challenged established conceptions. It also served as a wonderful platform for exchange of ideas between participants and faculty in a friendly atmosphere and at the picturesque setting of Nafplio!

Olesia Kompaniiets
Ph.D., Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv

OSA was a truly worthwhile experience. What a fantastic networking and knowledge sharing opportunity in a beautiful setting! The lecturers are very passionate about their fields of expertise and the OSA team did a great job at taking care of us (and were loads of fun too). I would definitely recommend attending the OSA to International Relations enthusiasts.

Viki Ferreira
Practising Attorney, Notary & Conveyancer, South Africa

Olympia Summer Academy 2020 registration is open

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