Studying REES was a unique experience. It introduced me to the broad field of area studies but also enabled me to focus on my specific interests. The REES programme is one you can build on, and I have just started a PhD at UCL's School of Slavonic and East European Studies. I am now researching the intersection of civil and political society in Central and Eastern Europe, focussing on women’s mobilisation in Poland. My research is part of the Horizon 2020 'FATIGUE: Delayed Transformational Fatigue in Central and Eastern Europe: Responding to the Rise of Illiberalism/Populism' project. Needless to say I would not be in this position if it was not for REES.