On July 16, 2018, there was a solemn opening of the XI International Summer School of Ukrainian Studies «Step to Ukraine», organized by the International Institute of Education, Culture and Diaspora Relations at Lviv Polytechnic National University, which coincided with the anniversary of the adoption of Declaration of State Sovereignty of Ukraine.
This year, the participants of the Summer School are representatives from six countries (Argentina, Belarus, Slovenia, Algeria, Turkey, the USA). Its peculiarity is the participation of two numerous delegations from Argentina and Belarus.
At first students went on the excursion around Lviv Polytechnic National University, the oldest higher technical education institution in Eastern Europe, conducted by the lecturers of the International Summer School of Ukrainian Studies Oksana Horda and Oksana Trumko.
Oleh Matviikiv, the Vice-Rector on Scientific and Pedagogical Work and International Relations, gave a welcome speech, expressing his sincere wishes that the International Summer School of Ukrainian Studies «Step to Ukraine», which is held every year by IECDR at Lviv Polytechnic, will become for its students not only the source of the Ukrainian language study, but the source of knowledge of the history and culture of Ukraine – the homeland of their parents, grandparents and great grandparents.
By a happy coincidence, the opening of the Summer School attended former president of the Ukrainian World Congress (in 1998–2008) Askold Lozynskyi, who emphasized that the students of the International Summer School will become Ukrainian diplomats, as in their countries they will tell people about Ukraine, its long history, rich culture and traditions.
Iryna Kliuchkovska, the director of IECDR, also made a welcome speech:
– We are working to spread the Ukrainian language in the world. I am convinced that the dissemination of true knowledge about Ukraine, its language and culture will contribute not only to preserving national identity, but also to creating a positive image of Ukraine in the world.
On the occasion of celebrating the 150th anniversary of Prosvita Society, Nadiia Liubomudrova, the Vice-Chairman of Taras Shevchenko Prosvita Society at Lviv Polytechnic National University welcomed the delegation from Argentina and presented books and textbooks.
The highlight of the opening of the School of Ukrainian Studies was the performance of Dviiko band, which impressed students with one of the oldest Ukrainian national instruments – bandura.
A uniting moment of the participants of the Summer School «Step to Ukraine» 2018 was not only the joint performance of the Ukrainian Anthem, but a joint photo with which the International Institute of Education, Culture and Diaspora Relations starts the flashmob #United_by_the_Ukrainian_language.
Photo by Yosyp Marukhniak