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Stephan Kowitz, started EMAES 2016

Stephan works at German foreign administration, Berlin

Tell us shortly about your master thesis

I investigated, based on two Articles of the Schengen Visa Code (Regulation 810/2009), how EU Legislation can be interpreted differently by the member states. In the end, it was also the question how much harmonization is being done and how much harmonization is wanted in the EU or in the Schengen Area. Title of the thesis is: Room for Interpretation? - A study on how the member state execute the harmonized Schengen Visa Code.

What content or course within the program did you value the most?

As such, I liked the mix of different topics very much. The program made it possible to enhance knowledge in fields that were not my strengths and - at the same time - to deepen and refresh knowledge in areas that I have studied before. Most memorable are, however, “The Social Dimension of Europe” and “European Market Integration".

What would you say was the hardest part of the EMAES-program?

Getting through the research methods part. I have never done anything in this field before and struggled a lot, above all in the beginning. Yet, it was clear to me only later in the course, how much this segment is needed to progress in the studies.

What advice can you offer on how to best manage to combine full time work with the EMAES-program? How did you do to succeed?

There is no masterplan as such. It is very important to designate a certain amount of time every week to the studies. It worked best for me to spread the work over the whole week and to not only study on one or two days during the weekend. Good time management is crucial.

In what way do you think the program will contribute to your professional career? What is your plan for the future?

As such, I do not have any concrete plans for the future. I chose the program primarily out of personal interest and to broaden my knowledge. This said, I think that a wide spectrum of knowledge is helpful for anyone's professional life.


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