Continuing our series following up with our graduates, Kate Chesterman speaks to Ondrĕj Boháč BSc (Hons) Politics and International Relations, 2012.
Ondrĕj graduated from CCCU in 2012 with a BSc (Hons) in Politics and International Relations. After finishing his Master’s studies in Edinburgh, he returned back to his home country, the Czech Republic, settling in its capital, Prague.
Before joining the diplomatic service of the Czech Republic, Ondrĕj briefly worked with the Police of the Czech Republic and with the Dutch company Philips in the capacity of a Government Affairs Trainee. In 2014, he began his career as a professional diplomat by joining the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Prague, where he held the position of political secretary to the Deputy Minister responsible for Security and Multilateral Issues.
In November 2017, Ondrĕj departed for his first diplomatic posting abroad. He is currently posted in Australia as Deputy Head of Mission and Consul of the Czech Republic. From April 2018 to February 2019, he was appointed Chargé d‘Affaires a.i. of the Czech Republic to Australia. His general agenda at the Embassy is to represent the political interests of the Czech Republic in Australia, New Zealand and in six other Pacific Island countries. Ondrĕj’s day-to-day duties vary from drafting political analysis, holding diplomatic negotiations, to consular issues and organising cultural activities. He says: “In my position, I have had the pleasure of meeting and working with a number of international people and to visit extraordinary places all over the world, something for which I will always be grateful.”
“Studying at CCCU helped me to increase my self-development skills and also to grow as a person in so many ways. The University fostered my ability to think critically and discuss issues, which I consider one of the greatest highlights of my time at CCCU, aside from the excellent sport facilities. I had the pleasure to have the best team of IR lecturers I could ask for – always approachable, kind and optimistic no matter what. I believe that any University is only as good as its people. And even 10 years after graduating from the University, I still feel like I could not have asked for a better academic environment, both in terms of challenges and support”.
Asked how to advise current students on how to make the best of their time at University, Ondrĕj says: “don’t be afraid to ask questions, both inside and outside of the classroom, challenge yourself and your peers by thinking outside the box and when you finally have your diploma in your hands, do not be afraid of the outside world, be pro-active and welcome new challenges with open arms. Moreover, having Canterbury Christ Church University on your resumé will give you a decent head start over others.”
Ondrĕj was speaking to Kate Chesterman, Alumni Relations Manager at CCCU. For more information about how to stay connected after graduation, please visit our Alumni Hub.