Interview with Jan Rovny
- Jan Rovny (photo: Lika Banshoya)
Jan Rovny is the academic advisor for the Summer School’s social sciences track. He also teaches the course “The European Union at a Crossroads,” along with other faculty members of Sciences Po’s Master in European Affairs. He is an assistant professor at Science Po at the Center for European Studies (CEE) and the Interdisciplinary Research Center for the Evaluation of Public Policies (LIEPP). Find his full biography on the Summer School Staff page.
What did you enjoy most about teaching at the Summer School last year?
The most enjoyable part of the Summer School last year were the excited and motivated students from all around the world, ready to learn, and ready to discuss. The summer makes for a more relaxed atmosphere in which to exchange ideas, and it was a pleasure to exchange with them.
What are you excited about for Summer 2016?
I am excited about the growing Summer School. We have increased our course offer and rounded out the curriculum, which now spans the social sciences and includes some courses in the humanities as well. We have been able to bring onboard a number of specialists to teach topics that are very relevant in today’s changing world, as well as very intriguing academic subjects.
As someone who has lived abroad extensively, why do you think studying abroad is important?
Studying abroad is often seen as an opportunity to discover, engage with, and handle difference. We go abroad to appreciate how different new places and people are, to experience a different environment, and discover alternative approaches… I, however, think that studying abroad is important because it allows us to realize, ultimately, how similar people are. In the end, we realize that no matter our place or culture of origin, our aspirations, hopes, uncertainties, fears, desires... are more less the same. Below the surface, we are all simply human.
What advice would you give students coming to study at Sciences Po for the summer?
I think it is key that students strike a balance between Summer and School. They come here to learn from our great faculty and from each other, but this learning does not happen only in the classroom. Paris is a classroom in its own right and students should seize the many wonderful opportunities the city offers.
What's your favorite cultural activity or institution in Paris?
Two pleasures immediately come to mind: reading a book in the Jardin du Luxembourg, and visiting the Musée de l’Orangerie.
What's your favorite spot in the Sciences Po neighborhood?
The embankment of the Seine beside the Pont du Carousel, where you can enjoy looking at the reflection of the Louvre crisscrossed by boats.