Sacid ÖRENGÜL, 2008 – 2009 Academic Year Jean Monnet Scholar

Sacid Örengül is a successful attorney. Jean Monnet Scholarship Programme was an important milestone in his career which changed his view of the European Union. He was introduced to Jean Monnet Scholarship Programme while he was working as a research assistant at the Faculty of Law at Erciyes University in Kayseri and he continued his education at K.U.Leuven, the oldest university in Belgium, doing his advanced level Master’s on “Energy and Environmental Law”. By the time he came back to Turkey, he was a scientist working on International Law, who had received his master’s degree on Energy and Environmental Law, gained invaluable, vision-expanding and seminal experience both academically and personally.

How has your career taken shape so far?
I was born in Fatih, İstanbul in 1981. I studied at Çapa Anatolian Teacher Training High School and then at the Faculty of Law at İstanbul University. Following my graduation from the Law Faculty, I did my law internship at İstanbul Bar Association and started European Union Master’s programme in the same university. At this time, I was also working part-time as a lawyer. During my last semester at İstanbul University, I passed the research assistant exam in the Department of International Law at the Faculty of Law at Erciyes University. After 25 years of living in İstanbul, I started working as an assistant in Kayseri.

When did you use the Jean Monnet scholarship programme?
I was a Master’s student at İstanbul University and working as a research assistant at Erciyes University, Faculty of Law. I got the Jean Monnet scholarship for the 2008-2009 academic year.

Which university did you attend via Jean Monnet scholarship program? What did you study as a Jean Monnet scholar?
I did my Advanced Level Master’s in K.U. Leuven, the oldest university in Belgium, on “Energy and Environmental Law” via Jean Monnet Scholarship Programme. The Chapter title I got the scholarship for was “energy”. I did my dissertation on Energy Agencies and Renewable Energy during my masters.

How has Jean Monnet scholarship program effected your career after you returned to Turkey?
The scholarship programme has affected my career quite positively. I did a one-month internship in Gent University with Prof. Dr. Frank Maes as a part of my Master’s programme in Belgium. During my internship, we talked about him being my consultant for my PhD studies in Energy Law. I returned to Belgium two months after I finished my Master’s, in October 2009 to do my PhD. As a scientist working on International Law, I can easily say that I have gained eye-opening, crucial career experience both for my academic and personal development.

How has Jean Monnet scholarship programme changed your view of the European Union?
My view of the European Union was more abstract, based on the historical, legal and political aspects of it I learnt in my European Union Master’s programme; however, my point of view has transformed into a more realistic viewpoint after living in Belgium and seeing the EU and its institutions from close. The European Union is a crucial regional and international actor which provides individuals and especially its citizens remarkable rights concerning subjects such as freedom, fundamental rights, consumer rights, etc. as well as being a means for various matters. The EU is an exemplary institution with its authentic structure that has enabled its citizens to discuss issues and find solutions together.

What would you like to advise to Jean Monnet scholarship applicants?
In my opinion, even applying to this scholarship is an invaluable experience. I would advise the applicants to study hard for the exam and try their luck a few times in getting the scholarship.