We are proud of how our Alumni evaluate their experience, at a later time ...

It is the long term impact that counts!

Following the top world-class legacy of the IIPES summer school, the educational programmes of TICLS and ILA have an immense potential of setting the standards in a summer school curriculum and programme, which combines unique interdisciplinary approaches to leadership, management, political science, economics and finance, and geopolitics. They provide a student experience like no other summer school in the fields and the region, in a modern dynamic programme and the most suitable academic environment.

Professor Georgios Panos (Adam Smith Business School, University of Glasgow)



“When you’re in your own country, you just see what is happening there. When you do this program, you get insight and overviews about what’s happening worldwide, and you can see things from a wider angle…” Bruno Atieh (IIPES 2007) American University of Beirut
  • "The academic programme of TICLS is unique. It is unique in academic terms because it is genuinely interdisciplinary. Whilst summer academic programmes mostly focus on deepening knowledge in one particular field (e.g. the Hague Academy for International Law in the field of private and public international law), the TICLS approach includes teaching staff from economics, political sciences and law allowing students to understand the interconnections between these disciplines. In doing so, the programmes aims at preparing students to understand the challenges for societies in 21st century, namely globalisation and security. Yet, the TICLS programmes are not simply academic, they are also meeting places for different cultures and perspectives. By bringing together students from the Middle East, the Balkans, the EU, the US and other parts of the world, students do not only study theoretically what it means to build a cosmopolitan world but they can experience it during their stay. Bundling interdisciplinary academic teaching, leadership skills and intercultural exchanges in one programme in an inspiring location is unique. Such an ambitious programme cannot be found elsewhere."
    Dr. René Repasi, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Scientific Coordinator of the European Research Centre for Economic and Financial Governance (EURO-CEFG)
  • The educational programs established by TICLS are designed to enhance both the students and the trainers’ knowledge. Being part of the academic board for TICLS and engaging as a professor during the international summer programs, I have always appreciated the discussions as learning material. I taught about conflict management and the world economic cycles – but considering the diversity of cultures that were present in class, I have also earned a lot from the experience. Debating matters of current world’s affairs, not only in class – but also at the cafeteria or just around the campus, makes it so that the relationship between students and their professors is reinforced and resists through time. I still talk to some of the students of the program, who are now working in various organizations – we still share similar interests and have vivid conversations about the world we live in. All in all, I think TICLS programs are reshaping and restructuring our personalities with every annual encounter there is.
    Dr. Antonia Colibasanu, Senior Analyst at Geopolitical Futures, trainer at the Romanian European Institute, Independent Business Owner at
Abigail KirschbaumIDC Herzliya, Israel
During the summer of 2012, I participated in IIPES, the TICLS sponsored program in Crete. Although my nationality is American, I have been living in Israel as a university student for the last three years. I received the opportunity to be the acting representative of Israel while taking part in the summer program. Studying alongside fellow students of the East Mediterranean was the most unique experience in which I have personally undergone. Observing the initial encounters between students from Kosovo , Serbia, and Bosnia, I was able to see a portrayal into why so many of the existing tensions are perpetuated by Israelis and Palestinians alike. The friendships cultivated between Egyptians, Israelis, Palestinians, Serbians, Bosnians, and Albanians to name a few, was eye opening; some of these conflict-ridden cultures have never come face to face with the culture that they are bred to hate. A program such as IIPES in Crete, granted us the tools to dig deeper and see one another in a humanized light. The relationships we crafted, dissolved existing prejudices, and allowed us to understand the origins behind the misconceptions that so many of us fall victim to. We realized that our personal prejudices developed, because prior to IIPES, we were never provided with a situation were we could encounter the groups that our respective societies condition us to point the blame. For anyone considering the ILA program in Crete, realize that this program will be a challenge; it will challenge the norms of your society, and it will challenge your society’s narrative. It is important to tackle the worldwide phenomenon of prejudice, and I believe this program serves as the ultimate opportunity in taking such a chance.
Mijat BarjaktarevicUniversity of Belgrade, Faculty of Political Sciences
… Besides to all the lessons and lectures the strongest message that I gained was from Aliki. She told us that life does not wait for anyone, and that we should not wait for miracles to happen, we should make them ourselves! The Academy experience will forever remain in my heart, as well as Crete. It's nice to know that besides your own home there is still a place in this world where you'll feel like you are at your own house. I hope that this gathering is in a row of many, and until then, TICkLe your brain!!!

and more REVIEWS

Dear friends, I am honored to have this opportunity to share my impressions of ILA with you. I will use it to express my gratefulness to Mr. Georgiou, Madam Dean, Lelde, Vassilis, Akis, for organizing this program; and to our professors and to my dear colleges for participating in it. I will use this opportunity to tell you two main things I have learned here. First, ILA gathered people from various countries here in Crete; we were discussing current topics in the world, talked to direct actors of events that happend lately in various countries, and had very different points of view. We had here a student from Egypt, Noha; and Ambassador Shahin; we talked to our dear Kurds from Iraq; we had two views on story of Kosovo and Metohia; and we had Nick among us, who gave us scientific opinion on society problems. After being given this mixture of opinion and impressions, I have discovered that there is no black and white, good and bad. I decided I must never again bring conclusions from one side, and that I will always put myself into shoes of a person standing in front of me! The other thing that I learned is a little more personal. When I was applying to participate in this program, I knew I would meet experts on international relations. As a student of the first year in economics, I was very nervous, and was not quite sure how productive I could be. I also called Mijat, asking him if I should even join them. However, speaking from this perspective, I can say that the decision to come here has been my best decision lately! I perceive it as stepping out of my comfort zone, and it gave me the opportunity to spend wonderful time learning how to combine knowledge that I have with new facts I hear. In the end, I cannot say that I am completely different person now, yet I can definitely claim that this experience influenced my choice of further direction on a very big crossroads of my life! This all brings us back to our first lesson with Mrs. Aliki, when we talked about the importance of interdisciplinary studies, and strive to improve ourselves everyday. Thank you again, my dear colleagues, for helping me to spread my areas of interest. As my attempt to thank you, I would like to advice you to learn something from me: In order to become a better person, challenge yourselves, step out of your comfort zones, and ticle your brainpower!

Visnja Cvetic

University of Belgrade – Faculty of Economics
It has been a great opportunity to make friends from all over the world and also a good chance to practice my speaking skills in English. I got to know the Greek traditions; culture and habits, as well as many of my new friends’ cultures. I also had the chance to learn from people of great knowledge and experience.

Palma Mozes


Merna Bahu

Bethlehem University
My experience in TICLS was full of breathtaking events that I did for the first time in my life. Here are some of these events because if I want to mention them all, it would take me forever to stop: travelling alone, being away from my family, living in a foreign country, talking to strangers, living with people from different countries of the world, taking lectures from the greatest professors in the world, meeting new people each and every day, visiting historical and cultural sites in Chania, eating Greek food, listening to Greek songs, dancing with a Greek dancing group, and many other amazing events. Although I was away from my family, I found in TICLS my second family. All in all, this experience absolutely fulfilled my expectations, and I could not spend my summer vacation better! For those who are hesitant about joining this program, I can only say this: Don’t think twice, this opportunity comes once in a life time. Seize it!
I think about you often and I am very grateful for you and all you have done to help create peace and understanding in the world. The Leaders has been the most memorable event of my life. Someday I will come back to Crete. I've done a pretty good job seeing alumni. I hope to see more in the future! Thank you again for doing such a great job and having such a wonderful program.


United States
The program was wonderful. I really liked the simulation games and enjoyed the lectures. Most of all I liked Economics and Civil Rights. I understood more about cooperation between international organizations during the lecture about international institutions. "Kernels of our future" also gave me an opportunity to make friends with people all around the world, to understand how to behave and act in different situations. The Leadership in Practice gave me a chance to use the skills that I got from the lectures and simulation games in the society. Simulation on NATO was really a wonderful creation of the program, but as for me, it will be nice if there are some more simulations (for example, UN, UNESCO etc.). The idea with country presentations was also excellent. I've learnt more about countries that were represented in the program. Meetings with the assistant of Prime-Minister of Greece, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of Education and visits of the Town Hall, Parliament and Ministry of Education made me understand how the government of Greece is working. The program also gave me inexpressible emotions while we were walking in Athens and Heraklion, visiting places of interest, such as Knossos palace, Akropolis, Old University of Athens. The National Radio-Television Company impressed me as well. I recognized how radio and television work.



Noora Said

It was an amazing experience because of the people I met, the relations I built, the information I gained, and the fun we had together as a group. This program was an eye-opener.