The International Office is often the first point of contact for visitors to the Protestant Theological Faculty in Prague. Who works there and what do they do? Here we offer you brief profiles of the staff and the work done by the International Office.
My name is Věra Fritzová and I have been working as head of the International Office since the academic year 1998/1999. I grew up in Prague and have spent my whole life here. I also studied in Prague, at the Arts Faculty of Charles University, where I studied sociology. Even after 20 years in the job, I still enjoy communication and working with people in various different fields (studying, research, fundraising…) at universities abroad und in international academic bodies, and meeting people from different countries and with different religious beliefs, and it still inspires me. Thanks to my work I have the opportunity to pass on my experience to the students and teachers at our Faculty and to those who come here from abroad. I also try to help our international visitors to learn more about our country, its history, and way of thinking. Apart from English, in which nearly all international communication takes place today, I can read and understand German, French, and Russian.
My name is Kristýna Kadlecová and I came from the part of the Czech Republic which is called the Czech-Moravian Highlands. I studied theology at the Protestant Theological Faculty in Prague. As an exchange student I also studied at the University of Leeds in Great Britain and at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, USA. These were amazing experiences that showed me which direction I wanted my life to take, and I decided that I want to work with international people. Having been an exchange student myself, I know how international students coming to a foreign country feel, and therefore I hope I can help them to acclimatize at the faculty and also in Prague, to be able to enjoy this beautiful city. I finished my studies in September 2018 and I have been working at the International Office of the Protestant Theological Faculty since October 2018. However, I already know the Office well, because while I was a student I helped it to organize many events, celebrations and conferences.
My name is Peter Stephens and I have been working at the International Office since 1995, the year the Faculty moved from Jungmannova Street to its present premises. Since then I have seen plenty of changes, with six Deans coming and going, but only three Vice-Deans for International Relations – an indication perhaps that continuity is important for international contacts. I originally come from England, where I studied history and social work, but because of Brexit I applied for Czech citizenship, which I acquired in 2017. Apart from English and Czech I also speak German and French. I hope that because of my own experience of living abroad I can try and help visitors to Prague feel at home.
The International Office is a small team under the direction of the Vice-Dean for International Relations. Its role is to create, coordinate, develop and enliven the Faculty’s international and ecumenical contacts – in cooperation with the teaching and administrative staff, the student body, and the representative bodies of the Faculty.
Among the tasks it deals with are:
- organising student and staff exchanges e.g. through the Erasmus programme
- care of international students studying at the Faculty, including orientation programmes for new students, excursions to places of interest connected with Czech history and the Czech Reformation, help with administrative formalities, and advice and consultation as required
- looking after visitors to and guests of the Faculty (both individuals and groups), including help with accommodation if required
- maintaining contacts with other theological schools, ecumenical organisations and churches
- coordination of Faculty involvement in EU programmes
- helping to organise ecumenical and international events and meetings
- coordination of the ecumenical and international activities of the Faculty