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Ján Michalčák

Our grant holder 2014 – 2017


University College London

Field of study

Politics and Eastern European Studies

Open Gate graduate in 2014

For young people in their formative years to find out what their goals in life are and what they want to achieve, they must have, in my opinion, an opportunity to develop independently: appreciate their own successes and learn lessons from their own mistakes. I have been different from my peers since the day I was born. I have had to fight the disfavor of destiny, which has placed a number of health barriers in my way. I realized that one of the ways to overcome them with flying colors was to seek an elite education. However, the public high school that I attended in my home town of Stříbro did not make sufficient personal or academic development possible for me.

I started to develop in full only at the Open Gate grammar school, from which I graduated thanks to financial grants provided by The Kellner Family Foundation. I also received equally important encouragement from the school’s staff: they have helped me to find myself. I now understand that it is possible to extend the limits of personal development – in spite of destiny – when you find the courage and determination to do so. And so, now I’m not afraid to leave ‘the Czech basin’ and go to a foreign country in pursuit of a good education. I know that I still have potential to tap in terms of my further development and learning the yet unknown. And I know that once I am back here again, I want to help Czech society in its own development, and in identifying and extending its seemingly insurmountable limits.


Open Gate grammar school, graduated in 2014


University College London, UK, majoring in Politics and East European Studies, since 2014



I regard the bachelor’s political science program in the U.K.’s capital, one of the political centers of Europe, as a tremendous opportunity to widen my knowledge and understand the broader context of politics. My goal therefore is to absorb as much experience as possible, experience offered to me by both London and University College London, one of the world’s most renowned universities. Surrounded by the colorful community there, I will have an opportunity to broaden my horizons so as to be able to make a responsible choice of what to study in my master’s program later and, above all, transfer knowledge I’ve gained there to the Czech public sphere.


I spend the majority of my leisure time observing current events around the globe, reading (both non-fiction and fiction), and meeting friends. I find travel very relaxing. I particularly like wandering around our beautiful capital.

My articles and what has been written about me

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