London Connection Q&A: Svetlana Grishaeva

Russia-based LLM student Svetlana Grishaeva talks to Lisa Pierre about science, skiing and volunteering
Svetlana Grishaeva: "Moscow is a perfect place for sport, both in summer and winter"
I was always attracted by British charm and it’s long tradition of excellent education

You graduated and are currently an associate professor at one of Russia’s leading technical Universities (MATI -Russian State Technological University).  What attracted you to study there?
MATI is a science-based University with an excellent reputation in teaching and research. I believe that science leads us to the best future and high technologies are a great part of it. That’s why I chose MATI. I graduated from the University with a specialization in Quality management and certification. I also received my PhD degree later in the same field.

Tell us more about what your role involves?
As an associate professor I teach, develop educational programs and curriculum materials, write professional articles and take part in scientific conferences.

It is claimed that MATI trains highly skilled experts in the field of advanced materials and high technologies.  Would you agree?
Yes, I agree. The University has highly skilled teaching staff, modern educational programs and technologies; these provide students an opportunity to get an education that is highly valued in our high-tech society.

Russia has seen many changes - politically, socially and economically.  In your lifetime what do you think has changed the most?
In my opinion, key changes are connected with new opportunities for Russian specialists to improve their competence within an international cooperation and an exchange of experiences with foreign colleagues.

Being involved in education yourself and already holding a PhD, what attracted you to study for the LLM?
One of the main reasons for choosing the LLM was professional development and the opportunity to get an internationally recognized qualification in the field of law that is valued by employers. Legal protection of intellectual property is connected to my current work in the field of quality management.

Why pick the University of London International Programmes?
I was always attracted by British charm and it's long tradition of excellent education. It was my dream to join the culture of England and study at the University of London - one of the most prestigious universities in the world. Its International Programme gives great flexibility in the choice of teaching methods and constructing of the educational course.

What do you think are the main differences between studying at a campus-based university and studying independently by distance learning?
In my opinion, distance learning is a challenging yet rewarding experience. The main feature of this kind of education is a high degree of self-organization and motivation of a student.

You are specialising in International Intellectual Property Law.  Is there a possible change in career direction ahead?
At the moment I have no plans to alter my career, but it is possible in the future. In any case, I will use my new knowledge in teaching.

You love skiing and worked as a volunteer at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi.  Tell us about that.
I visited the Olympic Games in London in 2012 as a spectator and I was inspired by the work of volunteers, so I decided to become a volunteer at the Olympic Games in Russia in 2014. The Winter Olympic Games in Sochi was a huge and spectacular event and volunteers created a special spirit of hospitality. I worked as a National Olympic Committee Assistant, met many interesting people and gained priceless experience in international cooperation. Thanks to these Games we had an opportunity to show to the guests and to the whole world our beautiful country and its culture.

I guess when it comes to skiing Russia is a good place for snow.  But you also like windsurfing and sailing. Is this something Moscow offers, or a holiday pastime?
Moscow is a perfect place for sport, both in summer and winter. There are many ski slopes in the city in winter and for lovers there is a year-round slope, “Snejcom”. I enjoy alpine skiing with my friends on a weekend. In summer you can windsurf and there is yachting inside the city as well as outside on water reservoirs. And if you are looking for waves, it is a great idea to go to the sea on holiday. For example, this summer I spent 12 wonderful days on a yacht sailing from Barcelona to Ibiza as a member of a team and I even stood at the helm.

You travel a lot for work. What are the best and worst things about this?
I think traveling is always interesting. While traveling, we learn about the world, other cultures, meet new people and it gives us an opportunity to develop ourselves, enriches us with new experiences and knowledge. On the other hand, the organization of international conferences and training is strenuous work; it requires responsibility, careful preparation and good time management.

What is the one place you would like to visit in your lifetime?
I'd like to visit Brazil. Having the experience of volunteering at the Olympics, I would like to help at the next Games. I have already registered as a volunteer to participate in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil! See you in Rio!