Most Polish qualifications are not recognized in the West except for Kraków University and the Politechnic of Waszawa.
I studied in Wroclaw and Zielona Gora. I was admitted to Vanderbilt (personal invitation of the then Chair of the English Department). I was also admitted to a Canadian University solely based on my Polish academic curriculum. In a way you are right though. I didn't have my M.A. then. I was a 3rd year student of English in Wroclaw.
When I studied computer science in Canada, two of my profs were Poles, with very thick accent actually. One was from U of Warsaw, the other from Silesian University. Both highly regarded, and both taught the toughest of the courses and were the most demanding among the staff.
A friend of mine (U of Wroclaw) was admitted to doctoral studies at Fordham University. He teaches English lit. at UCLA.
Another buddy of mine (U of Wroclaw) didn't suffer any rejections because of his M.A. being from a Polish university.
I also knew two American citizens who studied medicine in the Wroclaw Medical Academy. One is a family doctor in L.A., CA, the other is a surgeon in Chicago, IL.
There is more, but that would reveal too much about myself.
In England there are loads of so called educated Poles who are sweeping the streets.
This friend of mine (M.A. from U of Warsaw) teaches advanced topic in Japanese language semmantics in a British University.
In other words, irishborn, go ahead. Poland's academic standards may vary, but based on what I read from Michal, they are much higher than what he experienced in Moscow.