Thu 6 May 21
Essex graduate Konstantina Bethani has been shortlisted as a Global Finalist in the 2021 Study UK Alumni Awards, after winning the EU Entrepreneurial category.
The Awards recognise UK alumni who have distinguished themselves through exemplary leadership and achievements in their professional industry, and who can demonstrate the impact and scale of their achievements in their profession, and beyond.
Konstantina is one of 21 Global Finalists shortlisted from nearly 1,300 applications. The is the third consecutive year the University of Essex has seen one of our graduates reach the Global Finals. Last year we celebrated three alumni from Qatar, the Netherlands and Switzerland reaching this stage, and the 2019 awards also saw alumna Stephanie Case reach these prestigious finals.
Konstantina, who gained a Masters in International Relations from Essex in 2007, is founder and CEO of Tenebra Studios, an independent video game and digital interactive software development company with high-profile partners in the public and private sectors in Greece. She is also one of the organisers of Digital Expo, the largest technology event in Greece.
Through her own initiative and funds, Tenebra Studios has created educational applications for refugees, released free educational games that enable children to familiarise themselves with technology and has been involved in research on artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Konstantina has been proud of her work to challenge the gender gap in technology and promoting female leader roles worldwide for the last 15 years through mentoring and other roles.
“I strongly believe that it’s important for younger generations to see the women they look up to in prominent roles," she said. "Having positive images of powerful, intelligent women making change in our industry sends the message that the opportunities are limitless, regardless of your gender.”
She remembers her time at Essex as a life-changing experience. “In Essex, students get the opportunity to develop their skills, knowledge, critical thinking and connections to drive forward their careers. All these skills gained while studying in Essex helped me achieve my success,” she added. “I have proven to myself that the opportunities are limitless and that I am unstoppable. I wouldn't change a day of my Essex experience.”
Konstantina’s drive and leadership skills has helped her overcome many obstacles in the past 15 years to make Tenebra Studios the success it is today and is truly inspiring to other women keen for success in the world of technology.
“I have proven to myself that the opportunities are limitless and that I am unstoppable. I wouldn't change a day of it. I strongly believe that it’s important for younger generations to see the women they look up to in prominent roles. Having positive images of powerful, intelligent women making change in our industry sends the message that the opportunities are limitless, regardless of your gender.”
As for the advice she offers her mentees, she said: “I tell them to think big, start small. Follow the news and try to innovate as much as possible. I cannot stress enough the importance of work ethic, marketing your products and investing in capable colleagues. And never stop learning.”
Vice-Chancellor Professor Anthony Forster said: “We’re delighted to be able to celebrate Konstantina’s work on this platform. She has brought about profound positive change and we’re immensely proud that once again a member of our incredible alumni community is being recognised in this way.”
The three global winners will be announced in the autumn and we wish Konstantina the best of luck.