On Sunday, July 18, the International Institute of Education, Culture and Diaspora Relations launched the 15th International School of Ukrainian Studies «Step to Ukraine». The event takes place online.
Students which this year represent 9 countries, as well as distinguished guests from Ukrainian organizations abroad, (in particular, Yevgeniya Petrova, WFUWO, Bohdan Raichynets, the European Congress of Ukrainians, Liuba Horvat, the Union of the Ukrainians of Romania, Guto Pashko, a well-known Brazilian film director of Ukrainian origin and twice a graduate of the School), teachers and educators took part in the event.
Representatives of the Ukrainian diaspora and foreigners who want to get to know Ukraine became students of the School. For two weeks of intensive training, they will not only learn Ukrainian as a foreign language, but will have the opportunity to immerse in the Ukrainian culture, history and, of course, modern Ukraine.
Iryna Kliuchkovska, Director of IECDR, founder of the School and «Step to Ukraine» program, opened the Summer School. She said: «This year’s School is special not only because it is already the fifteenth, but because it takes place in the year when our Motherland and the whole Ukrainian world is preparing to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Ukraine’s independence, in the time when all the norms of the Law of Ukraine on the State Language, which we have been adopting for almost 30 years, have finally come into force».
According to Iryna Kliuchkovska, the peculiarity of the School is that after graduation students will receive certificates of study of the Ukrainian language as a foreign from Lviv Polytechnic, one of the highest rated universities in Ukraine, well known in Europe, the oldest in Eastern Europe, which has a variety of disciplines, in particular humanitarian.
The Director of the Institute expressed gratitude to Yevgeniya Petrova, the President of WFUWO, for caring for all those who nurture and want to learn the Ukrainian language, as well as for the partnership between WFUWO and IECDR. In addition, the Director of IECDR thanked the Union of the Ukrainians of Romania in the person of Liuba Horvat for the cooperation and the care of Ukrainians who live in Romania.
School participants represent Argentina, Brazil, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Germany, Russia, Romania, Slovenia and the USA, and include 11 Ukrainian women from the diaspora, who by the decision of the Scholarship Committee of the World Federation of Ukrainian Women’s Organizations received the Anna Kisil Scholarship.
At the opening students and participants met with teachers of the School «Step to Ukraine» Oksana Horda, Oksana Halaichuk, Nataliia Martynyshyn, Olia Rusnak, Olena Mytsko, Oksana Trumko, Halyna Temnyk, Mariia Lyzak and Nazar Danchyshyn, who are researchers at the IECDR and authors of textbooks on Ukrainian as a foreign language, developers of author’s methods for the Ukrainian language as a foreign, as well as the administrator Andrii Yatsiv.. Students received comprehensive information about the work of the School, class schedule, conversational practices and discussion clubs and expressed their readiness to start studying.
A special guest of the event was Bohdan Raichynets, President of the European Congress of Ukrainians, who in his speech wished success to all students and stressed that the IECDR educational project is a very good motivation for communities from all European countries as well as an important experience for the preservation of the Ukrainian language and identity in communities. According to him, perhaps the greatest value of every school is its students and graduates, people who have successfully completed their studies, gained new knowledge and experience, and not only use it in their professional activities, but also spread it around the world.
Such a person is another participant of the opening – Guto Pashko, a famous Brazilian director of Ukrainian origin, a two-time graduate of the School. He greeted the new students and stressed that due to the Ukrainian language, Ukraine is alive all over the world: «Regardless of where we were born and live, we are Ukrainians. Knowing the Ukrainian language, we preserve our culture and history».
Let us remind you that the XV International School of Ukrainian Studies «Step to Ukraine» will last until August 1.