Interview with Athanasia Dogouli, Scholar of the "Rhetor's Scholarship" Program

21 February 2024

Rhetor Law Firm recognizes and rewards the dedication, passion, and commitment of young students to pursue their dreams by covering the costs of their studies in selected postgraduate programs, contributing tangibly to the advancement of their academic careers. An integral part of Rhetor's philosophy is the continuous investment in education, putting into practice the vision of the company's founders, Dimitris Zachos and Andreas Papamikos, for a society of equal opportunities for young people.

Through the "Rhetor's Scholarship" program, which has become an institution for the company, full scholarships are awarded to law students for postgraduate studies at educational institutions in Greece.

-Why did you choose the legal profession?

I chose the legal profession as the subject of my studies because it represents a social science with immediate practical application and significance. Through it, I can contribute my knowledge and experience as a legal scholar to benefit my fellow citizens. Moreover, during my studies, I realized that law is not limited to the profession of lawyer or judge, but, on the contrary, it offers a plethora of professional -even creative- avenues based on a good understanding of the law, which can better match each individual's personality. What impresses me the most is that law is a modern science that constantly evolves according to the needs of society and technological advancements. Although many associate it with punitive action, equally important is its ability to proactively weigh ethical and social dilemmas, effectively regulating every aspect of our lives.

-What led you to choose your postgraduate program?

Upon completing my undergraduate studies, I decided that I wanted to further specialize in the application of European economic law issues, as they better suited my academic interests and professional goals. For this reason, I chose the postgraduate program at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki entitled "LL.M. in European Business and Economic Law," during its inaugural year, as its curriculum particularly appealed to me, as well as the fact that it hosts lecturers and students from all over the world and is conducted in English. Having graduated, I am truly happy with my choice, which allowed me to specialize, among other things, in areas such as personal data protection and intellectual property at the European level, and to write my thesis on a very contemporary issue, that of artificial intelligence in the context of patent law and intellectual property. Finally, I was fortunate to meet and connect with fellow students, young lawyers, and ambitious scholars, from Greece and various other parts of the world.

-Why did you choose the "Rhetor's Scholarship" program for your academic advancement?

I chose this particular scholarship program because I considered it a great honor for the advancement of my academic career to receive a scholarship from Rhetor, a law firm with a significant legal presence and experience. Specifically, I found it very important to frame my academic career through the supportive environment of Rhetor, which is distinguished for its deep specialization and broad understanding of legal issues in my areas of interest. Additionally, the selection criteria set by the "Rhetor's Scholarships" program are objective and accessible, which further motivated me to apply for the scholarship.

How did you find the selection process?

With clear prerequisites for submitting my scholarship application, the selection process was transparent and went very smoothly for me. Throughout the process, I could easily communicate with the people at Rhetor to resolve any questions I had. As expected, the part of the process that seemed most demanding to me was the interview before the Evaluation Committee. However, during this interview, I was allowed to present myself and discuss my academic and professional interests with excellent legal professionals without any anxiety or pressure. The end of the process came with the news of the successful receipt of the scholarship - an occasion for which I continue to be happy and grateful.

-What advice would you give to future scholarship applicants?

I would advise future scholarship applicants to seize every opportunity that, in their judgment, may have a positive impact on their academic journey, not to hesitate, and to make applications that concern their future. Moreover, they should always be themselves! By showing confidence in our abilities, everything is possible. It is just necessary to set goals and persevere in them sincerely, but also optimistically.

-What are your future goals?

My main current and future goal is to constantly evolve as a legal professional. For me, knowledge and evolution have no limits, but there are always more opportunities to discover, more areas to improve. Through my current professional engagement, I am specializing as a lawyer in the field of personal data protection, a direction I wish to follow in my future professional pursuits, especially due to the importance of privacy protection in the emergence of new technologies. Finally, I am considering further deepening my academic and practical knowledge through the pursuit of a doctoral program and conducting research, as a significant opportunity for the future.

By investing in knowledge and rewarding excellence, Rhetor Law Firm contributes tangibly to the advancement of society and Legal Science.