We were not off to a good start in 2012. On 20 January, we lost our dear Mzia Mikeladze. Her sudden passing away has shaken the entire ISET community but life had to continue… We created a memorial fund and a special scholarship to encourage young ISET students to remember Mzia and to follow in her footsteps.
We worked hard the whole year to make ISET an even better place: for work and study but also for fun with colleagues and friends. We finally managed to make ISET a truly regional enterprise by bringing to Tbilisi a lot of talented youth from Armenia and Azerbaijan. They are currently almost a half of the first-year class.
Our network continues to grow and gain in strength. We have a larger faculty (the most recent addition is Adam Pellillo, the only American despite an Italian name), and a larger entering class. Naturally, we have more and more alumni serving their countries in key decision-making positions. Not less importantly, our alumni have more and more ISET kids! Just a few months ago, we’ve just had another ISET wedding, and the first one involved our Azerbaijani graduates – Nizami Imamverdiyev and Gulmira Gafarova.
2012 was a breakthrough year for the ISET Policy Institute. The Institute now employs 10 ISET graduates and one senior fellow - Giorgi Bakradze, a highly qualified macroeconomist and (also) What, Where, When Champion of the World.
We are now many better-recognized thanks to a big push in external communication: we now publish regular columns with all major English language media in Georgia, including Investor.ge, Georgia Today, and The Financial. And, of course, there are the ISET Economist Blog, Consumer Confidence Index, Leading GDP Indicator, and the Khachapuri Index…
It will be hard to continue to improve at the same pace in 2013 but we have the energy and the willingness to try. With your help!