Maria Psyridou, Greece


Maria Psyridou, Greece

Graduated 2015

While being on the last year of my bachelor in primary education, I started entertaining the idea of continuing my studies and focusing more on education, special needs education and research. Exploring various alternatives, I came across the Master’s degree programme in Education offered by the University of Jyväskylä. Coming to Finland to study education is a dream come true for every teacher! The well-known Finnish educational system and its unique characteristics and success was in the beginning the main reason that I decided to come to Finland. The variety of experts and the high valued research that is conducted at the University and the Faculty of Education led me to choose the specific programme. During these two years, I had the opportunity to be part of a vibrant academic and research community and exchange ideas not only with other students but with professors and researchers who were both inspiring and approachable. I was challenged, engaged, and inspired by everyone involved including the faculty, staff and students and they helped to develop myself as a student, educator and person. Most of all, I was given the opportunity to realize my passion for the research and for the field I am working on.

After I was encouraged to pursue a PhD, I did not even have second thoughts. I applied and I got accepted as a doctoral student at the Faculty of Education, whereupon I was granted a paid doctoral position for 12 months by the Department of Teacher Education. Despite the fact that I am still in the beginning of my doctoral studies, I feel that the Master’s programme impacted me. First of all, it helped me to discover my passion for research but also it helped by maturing my way of thinking and strengthening my analytical and critical thinking skills. What I really found very impressive was the freedom that I had to be driven by my own interests and passions to pursue the degree and consequently to discover the research areas that I wanted to get involved with. Moreover, during this programme, it was my first time being a member of a multicultural group. The students of the programme were from around the world and I ended up having the international experience I was anticipating. Therefore, it helped to develop my interpersonal skills, which I believe that will be very beneficial both for my professional and personal development.

Maria Psyridou