Keelite of the Month: June 2017 Viktoriya Miskova

2011 Law with International Relations (LL.B)

Viktoriya and pooch What am I doing now?

I work as a Compliance Co-ordinator at the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) in Stockholm, Sweden. I am also writing my thesis focusing on Principles of Good Governance within EU Law and their implication on Member States.

Photo left: At home with our family dog.
How did you get to where you are now?

I was working while doing my thesis, and actively looking for work within an international organisation. My interest in the EU and LLB from Keele helped me apply for a position with an EU Agency.

What has been your biggest achievement so far?  

So far my biggest achievement is managing full time work and full time studies, while still having time for personal growth. I’ve taken up new hobbies and try to balance out my lifestyle.

And your biggest mistake?

From a professional point of view, I wish I chose to do internships or traineeships during the summer while I was doing my LLB. Financially, it is difficult to commit to such a thing now, but I feel that when I was 19, I could have tried more to find internships that fit my scope of interest.

Vika at Sea What are your ambitions now?

My ambition is to finish my LLM and apply for work that focuses on Governance, Risk and Compliance. In my line of work I find it fascinating how law in theory becomes practice and the human factor in these interactions.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to work in a similar field?  

Persistence is key. I feel that I have been very lucky to come from an international background, and that gave me the courage to pursue a degree in the UK, live in Shanghai, Dubai and then tackle a thesis in Swedish. In all the jobs I have had, I have done what was given to me, and always strived to try new things and expand my knowledge. At peak job-searching moments, I would apply for 20-30 positions a day.

Photo right: 2010 a trip by rubber boat... for 2 hours in open water, with only a thin rope to hold on to!

What made you choose Keele University?   

I went to boarding school when I was younger, and really enjoyed a “campus” type of environment. The cozy size of Keele, away from a big city, and a strong LLB program was a no-brainer!

What kind of a student were you?

I was definitely a “make sure everything is done in time” type of student, but with a tendency to leave things… until three nights before the exam or essay was due! If I found something interesting, like International Law or Equity, I would actually spend time learning things because it was interesting to me on a personal level.  

Vika in Copnehagen How has Keele influenced your life?  

Keele actually gave me a more open-minded view of society. I learnt things in class that I would have never ever been exposed to in daily life, gaining a more universal understanding of the world around me. My critical thinking abilities sharpened after spending time with my Torts, Public Law and Crime professors! Personally, I have met people from a very different background to mine, and it helped me overcome prejudices, learn about new cultures and have the chance of being part of one!

Photo left: 2009 - a short visit to Copenhagen to visit a friend during Easter break from Keele

What is your favourite memory of Keele?

I have so many! I lived in Horwood all three years, and remember friends stopping by my window, throwing stones to see if I want to hang out. I enjoyed the Hallowe'en parties and the mystery of the laundry room (where DO THE SOCKS GO?) I remember hanging out on the Keele lawn, taking walks in the woods and sometimes trekking out into fields in my bright red wellies – I have travelled a lot but that scenery is unforgettable!

Ice Climbing What is your impression of Keele now?

I don’t hear much from Keele except for my contacts with the Alumni Office, potential Sweden visits of exchange students or workers, and naturally, the visiting of friends! I’m happy that I still have some very good friends left from Keele, and despite the distance, I think they will be long-lasting friendships (Hi, Pasha!) It makes me happy to see that Keele is improving every year – I read the updates and see the pictures of revamping of the campus – great!

Photo Right:  2017 Ice climbing up by the Arctic Circle (Abisko Canyon, Sweden)

Anything else you would like to add?

I would like to thank the Alumni Office for being such great support during my time at Keele! By working with them I gained a deeper appreciation to my university, my home for three years, and one of the most valuable contacts I have. Thanks to the Alumni Office, I was able to connect with people around the world who were eager to reach out. If it wasn’t for John, I would have never worked for the Graduation Office, getting to experience every single graduation ceremony for summer 2011!