Manchester to host first ever UK conference of Ukrainian students
The University of Manchester is holding the UK's first ever Ukrainian student conference this Friday.
This is a landmark occasion, as it is the first time Ukrainian students from across 19 HEIs in the UK have been able to come together in one place. The event is happening at a time of intensification of Russia’s unprovoked aggression against Ukraine, recently targeting civilian infrastructure with indiscriminate bombing.
The Ukrainian Student Conference is organised by the Ukrainian Student Union (UK), the Ukraine Hub UK initiative (set up by The University of Manchester's MOBILISE Project UK team following the February 24 all-out Russian invasion), and most importantly, the Ukrainian Student Societies of the Universities of Manchester, Oxford and LSE.
The main coordinating team included Jan Szkulepa, Makar Mizevych, Ruslan Pavlyshyn, Maliek Banat, Danylo Nikiforov, among many other students part of the three societies (including a large team at UoM). Ms Cressida Arkrwright a UoM PhD expert on Ukrainain Youth Engagement supported the event as PhD Coordinator and our resident Ukrainian Politics expert Dr. Olga Onuch acted as senior mentor.
The event is generously funded by the University of Manchester's Humanities Strategic Civic Engagement Fund (HSCEF), and is also supported by the MOBILISE project and Ukrainian Embassy in the UK.
This conference brings together dozens of Ukrainian students and UK University alumni from across the whole country for a day of talks, working groups, monitoring, and lectures. Among many special guests will be Ms. Olga Tokariuk, a renowned Ukrainian Journalist and Reuters Institute Fellow at Oxford, and Professor Andrew Wilson of UCL will be joining the students for key note lectures.
Dr Onuch said “It is our duty as scholars and university leaders to support the next generation - one way we can do this is to provide a space where they can come together, meet each other, and feel a collective sense of support and meaning," said Dr Onuch. “These students have been through unthinkable trauma and stress in the last year - they have family and friends in harm's way, and yet they still have to write essays, sit exams, and think of finding a job. Thus, we must do all we can to support them and their ambitions.”
Having had the opportunity to work with these students over the last 9 months I have been blown away by their leadership capacity and work ethic. These are very impressive young people who will make the future bright in both Ukraine and the UK!