Interview with one of the lucky Skype IT Academy scholarship recipients

28. october 2013

In August the IT Academy announced a scholarship in assosciation with Skype to support the studies of 15 Master’s students in both Tallinn University of Technology and University of Tartu international IT related degrees. After receiving numerous applications, 20 students were shortlisted for an interview and in the end 14 qualified students were chosen to receive the scholarship of €6500.

To encourage students to apply for all future scholarships by the IT Academy, we decided to do an interview with one of the recipients Taavi Ilves.

 How did you hear about this opportunity?

 I heard about this opportunity through my university.

 What course are you studying on? How are you finding it?

 I am studying on a Tallinn University of Technology and University of Tartu joint international course called Software Engineering. I am very satisfied with my decision. In Estonia it is probably impossible to find a better Master’s course related to software development.

What made you apply for this scholarship?

I like to grasp on to interesting opportunities. There wasn’t much that needed to be done and there was nothing to lose with the application. Some might have been intimidated by the interview but to me it was an interesting experience. I can safely say that a thesis defence is a lot more nerve-wracking.

What do you think sets you apart from the other candidates and got you the scholarship?

 All the candidates were strong but what probably worked in my favour was my good average grade, good CV (with the previous job experience and some hobby projects) and representing my school at an international programming competition.

What is your research area for this degree?

 In my thesis I will try and test the hypothesis of being able to predict whether a company will go bankrupt or not if the dynamics of the company’s managers change. Technically speaking it is an analysis of a two-stage dynamic graph.

 How will the extra money benefit you?

The scholarship will definitely help me focus on my studies a bit more. In my opinion the acknowledgements and contacts gained through this are just as valuable. It will definitely look good on a CV.

 What are your plans for the future?

 After graduating from university I would love to work as a software architect either in Estonia or abroad. At the same time there is the option of trying out as an entrepreneur. Ideally it would be good to gain knowledge and experience from a successful business and later implement it as an entrepreneur.

What advice would you give to next year’s applicants?

 I would definitely recommend focusing a lot on your studies and giving it your best. In addition to the required modules one should independently learn about things that interest them particularly. It is also a good idea to take part in all kinds of different competitions and events related with the field.

Applications are still open for the IT Academy and LHV Bank scholarship. Make sure you keep your eyes open for other announcements for next year as well by checking our website and liking our Facebook page.

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