Success Story: Jyldyz Abdyldaeva, Politics and Security '2017

28 March, 2024

My name is Jyldyz Abdyldaeva, and I am a 2017 graduate of the OSCE Academy's MA Programme in Politics and Security. I'd like to thank the OSCE Academy for being an important part of my professional growth and shaping who I am today.

During my maternity leave, and after analyzing existing development tendencies and job market competitiveness, I resolved to apply for a Master's degree and became very eager to join development projects led by international organizations in my country.
I was aiming to have the privilege of being selected for the OSCE Academy’s MA Programmes, which, while based in Kyrgyzstan, offer an excellent quality of education and study conditions. When my first attempt was unsuccessful, I was ready to take start a job but not to give up on my dream of applying to the Academy. By happy coincidence, I had joined the Academy's staff by the time I was successfully accepted into the MA in Politics and Security Programme. I recall the Director of the OSCE Academy congratulating me, saying, "We always have people graduating from the Academy and joining our team but this is the first time we have a staff member leaving us to become a student of the Academy.”
The 16-month intensive curriculum, diverse student body from various backgrounds, and fascinating teaching staff made my study experience unforgettable. Studying alongside classmates, who were all incredibly intelligent, compassionate, diverse, and like-minded individuals with amazing life experiences of their own, as well as getting chosen for the international internship in Oslo, Norway, made my years at the Academy even more thrilling. My interest in writing my MA thesis on gender issues was also sparked by my studies at the OSCE Academy. All of these opportunities have made a significant contribution to my personal development and future professional path.
After graduating from the Academy, I worked on a number of development projects with civil society institutions and local governments throughout the country—all with a focus on governance, public service and the objective of furthering female empowerment and gender equality in Kyrgyzstan. Having worked in the field of gender equality for the past five years, I was at a place in my professional life where I felt drawn to pursue additional specialized education in the field of gender and development studies. This led to me seeking to undertake a Master’s degree in the UK, through the prestigious Chevening Scholarship scheme, in order to combine my hands-on professional experience on the ground with deeper theoretical knowledge of gender and development studies. My intention was to enhance my capabilities as a gender expert and, most importantly, be able to influence Kyrgyzstan’s local and national policies on female empowerment and gender equality.
And today, I can proudly say that I am a 2023-2024 Chevening Scholar, pursuing an MA degree at the best university in the world for development studies. For the seventh consecutive year, the University of Sussex and the Institute for Development Studies were placed #1 in the world for development studies by the QS University Rankings (including 2023), placing Sussex above Harvard and Oxford. Moreover, Gender and Development Studies is one of Sussex’s longest-running MA programmes. While sitting in the IDS classrooms listening to outstanding professors, I realize that the story behind this success stems from my initial passionate desire to study at the OSCE Academy in Bishkek, and consequently the Academy will always hold a special place in my heart.
All my knowledge, networks, and further work will be dedicated to ensuring that Kyrgyzstan, as a member of the international community, fulfills its commitments in relation to advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment for the sake of the country’s prosperity and a better future for all Kyrgyzstanis. I also hope to eventually transmit my expertise to younger generations of Central Asians eager to make a difference in their communities, through teaching at university level in Kyrgyzstan.


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