Emilia Jamroziak (MEDS '97) is a medieval scholar and author of three monographs. She heads the Institute of Medieval Studies at the University of Leeds. Her research focuses on medieval religious culture, monasticism, frontiers and borders in medieval Europe. In 2015-16 she held Humboldt Research Fellowship for Experienced Researchers at the Technische Universität Dresden.
As director of the Institute of Medieval Studies at the University of Leeds, what do you find the most fascinating or impactful aspect of your work?
The best aspect of my job is developing new generation of scholars and building international cooperations. I get to work with some very clever people who want to make a difference not just in the academic field but more broadly.
How do you feel your education at CEU helped prepare you for or affected the work you do today?
Without any doubt! Without studying at the CEU I would not have been where I am now. It gave me a bridge between the worlds and instilled in me importance of always looking for new opportunities. And that networks really matter!
What do you feel was the core value of your CEU education? What stood out?
It was, and I am sure still is, openness, tolerance and determination in reaching goals. These are really important foundations for career and life.
You studied at CEU in its very early days. Do you feel the university’s mission is still as important or relevant today as it was then?
Yes, it is more important than ever! The resurgence of nationalisms, new waves of racism and xenophobia are affecting not just public discourse but 'real life' too. CEU is a beacon of higher education that is not for profit, meritocratic and truly open to the world and not only to these who can pay high tuition fees.
For a medieval scholar, your position is arguably a fantastic success. What encouragement would you share with those just starting at the department this year?
Medieval Studies are alive and kicking and there is a lot still to contribute! And whatever you decide to do in the future, keep looking for open doors - it is worthwhile to be persistent!
What do you miss from your time as a student here?
I miss many wonderful friends that I made during my time at the CEU. We see each other too infrequently