ISET’s track record in sending its graduates into prestigious jobs or Ph.D. programs speaks for itself, and these opportunities are major points of attraction for would-be ISETers. However, the benefits of becoming an ISET graduate are best demonstrated when members of its alumni return and connect with the next generations.
The current cadre of ISET MA and BA students were, therefore, very lucky to meet one of the most distinguished graduates in the institute’s history. Ala Avoyan graduated from ISET in 2012 as the valedictorian of her class, before earning a fully-funded scholarship to New York University to pursue a Ph.D.; she was assisted in her application by recommendations from her former lecturers of the ISET faculty. After graduating with a Ph.D. Degree from NYU in 2018, she secured a position as an associate professor at Indiana University.
Ala came to Tbilisi for a short visit to teach a two-week course in Experimental Economics for ISET’s second-year MA students. Her teaching is entirely voluntary, and a result of her desire to give something back to ISET and the institute’s community. However, students from the BA program and those in the first year of their MA studies still had the opportunity to meet and speak with Ala, since she also gave a career development talk in which she shared her experience and gave valuable insight into the opportunities and challenges graduates may expect to encounter. Studying at ISET is never, of course, easy, but Ala’s talk demonstrated the crucial role becoming an ISET graduate plays in advancing academic and professional careers.
ISET is deeply grateful to Ala for working so hard to give back to the ISET community and help in strengthening the firm bonds that connect the community. She is a shining example of what can be achieved with hard work, dedication, and an ISET degree.