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Alumna of the month!

Alumna Profiled: Tatiana Averoff-Ioannou
Graduated: DEREE ’76
Lives in: Athens, Greece
Current Position: Writer / President, E. Averoff-Tossizza Foundation

TATIANA AVEROFF was born in Athens Greece and graduated from DEREE in 1976, majoring in psychology and philosophy. She earned an MSc degree in Social Psychology from the London School of Economics and Political Science in 1978. For the next sixteen years she worked in the private education sector as an educational psychologist, publishing two books on cooperative learning during this same period. Since 1995, she dedicated herself exclusively to directing the Averoff Gallery in Metsovo, part of the Evangelos Averoff-Tossizza Foundation, over which she has presided since its foundation in 1988. She is the author of five novels and dedicates most of her time to writing and teaching Creative Writing to young writers. She is married to Sotiris Ioannou and has one son, Alexandros Ioannou, also a graduate of DEREE.


Q.: What are three enduring lessons you learned during your studies at PIERCE?

  • -That learning can be made interesting and inspiring

  • -That when I am interested and inspired I can achieve wonders

  • -The importance of cooperation. Also that cooperation skills are not to be taken for granted, but need to be carefully cultivated.

Q.: Describe PIERCE in three words.

Challenging, open-minded, friendly.

Q.: One of your favorite PIERCE memories?

Just the feeling of waking up every day full of energy and happy to start off for DEREE.

Q.: What do you miss most from your days at PIERCE?

The unusually high standard (academic and personal) of (most of) its professors.

Q.: Where was your favorite spot on campus?

The library!

Q.: Who was your favorite teacher and why?

Dr Ann Cacoulos (philosophy) – she was one of the three people in my life who really opened up new worlds for me.

Q.: Have you kept in touch with any of your classmates?

Not really. Only with one or two with whom, later on, I shared for many years the same work environment.

Q.: How did DEREE help prepare you for your professional life?

It taught me to believe in myself and to persist in my goals; not to settle for less. The academic skills I acquired at DEREE served as a passport to higher education — and to life-long education which from then on became easy; a natural and necessary ongoing process.

Q.: What’s the greatest piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Be true to yourself. You’re not obliged to justify your beliefs and choices to others, just pursue them.

Q.: What (or who) inspires you?

People who are passionate and successful, yet humble and intuitively accepting of others.

Q.: Your motto in life?

Every day is a new journey, a new opportunity.

ACG Alumni: We Stay Connected!