Meet Our Alumni: CERGE-EI Provides a Lot of Different Opportunities for Self-Development, says Viktor Tchistiakov

Viktor Tchistiakov studied in the first CERGE-EI cohort. What was the best and the most challenging study he did there and why does he volunteer as a local group leader for Benelux?

CERGE-EI was established in 1991 and you started to study in its first cohort. What convinced you to apply to such a new institution back then?

Going back to 1991, everything was new and rapidly changing. In this sense, applying to a new institution is nothing extraordinary. It was even more fitting to accept starting from scratch after the fall of the wall.

What was the best and the most challenging study you did there?

The best was the diversity of the international and multicultural students in the cohort. Also, teachers were representing a lot of different top foreign institutions. Learning, working, and settling in Prague was priceless as well. What I found challenging was to quickly learn a lot of new subjects on a rather high and advanced postgraduate level especially when I had very limited undergraduate background in modern Economics for example. Overall, the program was rather intense with a lot of exams (mid-term, end-of-semester/term and final comprehensive exams), and accompanying work in the roles of research and teaching assistant.

You work as a Senior Associate at CSMU, Rabobank in the Netherlands. Can you tell us more about your career and your current work?

After completing my Ph.D. in Mathematics, I decided to fork in Finances in diverse money management and risk management functions. Since 2000, I worked in the banking industry, performing research and modeling for risk management of various risk types. At Rabobank, I’m mainly responsible for developing methodology, policy, and procedure for regulatory-driven modeling in the area of Credit Risk.

You’re volunteering as a local alumni group leader in Benelux. Why have you decided to take part in this initiative? What have you done already and what are your plans with the local alumni group?

I must admit, that the plans were rather disrupted by COVID-19. They included getting acquainted with other alumni and providing support/assistance/guidance to freshly graduated CERGE-EI students on their local job market search. There are plenty of opportunities here in the private and public sectors.

What do you perceive as the strongest message CERGE-EI gives to its students?

CERGE-EI provides a lot of different opportunities for self-development and gaining astonishing and competitive qualifications. Use them for improving your quality of life and for society’s broader benefits.


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