What Our Students Say


Let our students tell you what makes this programme so special?

Click on the dropdown links below to meet some of our students and read what they think about studying on the IMSISS programme.

If you would like to learn more about our students and read their own security analysis reports then please visit the IMSISS Student Think Tank Website – THE SECURITY DISTILERY. You will be able to read reports written by our students on a wide variety of issues inlcuding ‘Arms and Disarmament’, ‘Environmental Security’, ‘Technology and Security’, ‘Terrorism’, ‘Human Security’ and ‘Political Affairs’ among others.

Being awarded the IMSISS Scholarship for the 2021-23 cohort as the only female representative from Pakistan has reinforced my belief in the importance of challenging gender stereotypes and pushing boundaries. This program has been a transformative journey, empowering me to break barriers and explore the truth in the fields of security and intelligence. Studying at the top three prestigious universities; University of Glasgow (UK), Dublin City University (Ireland), and Charles University (Czech Republic) has not only broadened my academic horizons but also enriched my personal growth.

IMSISS has provided me with a unique opportunity to immerse myself in different educational systems and cultures. Each institution offered a distinct perspective on security, intelligence, and strategic studies, equipping me with a comprehensive understanding of global security challenges and their solutions through nuanced approaches.

In addition to academic excellence, this degree has enabled me to learn the invaluable skill of living independently. Being away from home and having to navigate new cities and cultures has pushed me out of my comfort zone, fostering self-reliance, adaptability, and resilience. This experience also prepared me to handle the challenges that come with living in foreign countries as an international student.
For prospect/incoming students, my advice would be to fully embrace the opportunities presented by this program. Immerse yourself in the diverse experiences, be proactive, open-minded and engage with your peers and professors to outshine in academia with professional networking.

IMSISS has been a holistic and transformative experience for me. I learned through different pedagogical methods, but what is more important is that it gave me multiple opportunities to get involved. I had the chance to become the IMSISS 21/23 Student Representative of the Trento Pathway, a research member of the Glasgow University GameLab, participate in the two-day training in the Center of Excellence for Police Units in Vicenza, Italy, and a three-day Cybersecurity workshop by Leo & Muhly Cyber Advisory in Prague, Czech Republic. Moreover, I carried out a Collaborative Dissertation Placement with the Austrian Institute of International Affairs and a traineeship at the Diplomatic Academy of the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Last but not least, I learned a new language, Italian, lived and worked in multicultural environments, expanded my professional network, and made friends from all around the world.

Being a student of IMSISS has not only developed me academically, but personally as well. Studying at different universities and living in several countries has been very rewarding as it has brought me in contact with diverging forms of teaching, has helped me expand my network and has forged strong friendships with other students on the course. IMSISS has also provided me with the opportunity to participate in the CPDP Conference in Brussels, to follow a two-day course at CoESPU in Vicenza and to pursue a collaborative research project in Budapest. Apart from that, I have been a member of the podcast team of the Security Distillery think-tank, which is led by the students of IMSISS. All in all, if you are ready for a dynamic two years with a lot of travelling and new experiences, you will not regret choosing IMSISS.

From my experience as an IMSISS student, I have found the best element of the masters programme so far to be how it provides cutting-edge academic teaching on a wide range of topics such as the ethics of intelligence and surveillance practices, migration studies and gender. As security and intelligence studies are rapidly expanding disciplines, I have found both the lecturing staff, the IMSISS fellows and the additional guest speakers (who are often expert practitioners in their specialist field) to draw on the latest development and provide great insights into the latest emerging trends. It is the quality of the IMSISS partner universities as well as the programme’s innovative combination of conceptual issues such as security theory with the practical contemporary security challenges facing modern societies which makes it such a useful and interesting masters programme. Most recently I had the opportunity to participate in the Cyber 9/12 UK competition on behalf of the IMSISS 18/20 cohort – this involved taking on the role of senior policy advisors to government and private sector officials in relation to cyber security policy and a developing cyber security threat scenario. The fact that my team and I succeeded in making it to the finals of this competition, with the coaching of Dr Damien Van Puyvelde (University of Glasgow) shows the calibre of teaching in relation to cyber security and intelligence.

The Erasmus Mundus International Master in Security, Intelligence and Strategic Studies brings together students from over 30 countries, creating a valuable platform to debate current topics related to the international security and intelligence field. Being part of this multicultural environment is a unique opportunity that promotes continuous exchange of knowledge, and helped me to widen my understanding of the international security framework and improve my critical thinking skills. Moreover, IMSISS fosters the development of practical knowledge for future employment through the competitive based internship and placement component of the program. Finally, the program promotes students’ active involvement in extracurricular activities. Due to my particular interest in cyber security the programme gave me the chance to participate in the UK Cyber 9/12 Strategy Challenge as part of the University of Glasgow team, getting to the Semi-finals and being awarded the Best Oral Presentation. This experience was a major opportunity to acquire practical experience and interact with professional representatives from the cyber field.

Mehwish Rani is one of our students from the 2017-2019 cohort. Please watch the short video from her visit to London to meet Emily Winterbotham from RUSI (Royal United Services Institute).

I work as a Diplomat at the British High Commission in Abuja, and absolutely love how dynamic, stimulating, and challenging my day-to-day role is. I lead our bilateral trade relationship, convene Ministerial Economic Development Forums, and progress UK-Nigeria Trade and Investment negotiations. My experience at IMSISS has genuinely helped me in this role; during the recent Presidential Elections, I was seconded into the Political Unit where I disseminated SitReps (much like I had practised during crisis management exercises throughout the IMSISS semester in Regensburg).

IMSISS was an invaluable programme for developing long-lasting networks, gaining in-depth research experience (which helped me land my first internship at a Libyan Think Tank), and practical learning like scenario modelling, the Cyber 9/12 Challenge, and a work-based learning placement at the UN in New York. Following IMSISS, my career path has taken me to the Counterterrorism Department at the EU, Intelligence Analysis at Deloitte, and Research on Serious and Organised Crime for Local Councils. My favourite aspect of IMSISS was definitely the intercultural, international student cohort and the enriching opportunity to study in multiple locations- it undeniably ignited my passion to pursue a global career in the Foreign Service!