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Why in Lviv


Lviv is a unique city, in which the history, culture, mentality of two worlds – the East and the West – are tolerantly merged

Students of Fordham University visited School



Fordham University Students with professor Yaroslav Hrytsah, who just gave a lecture about Ukrainian history

The School of Ukrainian Language and Culture and the Department of International Academic Relations successfully completed its second study trip tour for the year 2013.  A group of 11 students from Fordham University braved the winter, coming to Lviv to meet Ukrainians, experience Ukrainian culture, and learn its history. It was so great to meet these students and be involved in the program!


The students traveled as part of a course they are enrolled in with Professor Olena Nikolaenko.  A native Ukrainian now working at Fordham University, Professor Nikolaenko offered a course in “Youth and Politics” that included this trip to Ukraine.  Fordham students came to Lviv to discover how students at the Catholic Ukrainian University are politically active.  Throughout the week, Fordham students met with and conducted interviews with UCU students asking them about their voting habits, news sources, and feelings toward Ukraine’s political process.


Excursion through the city center

To say the least, the Fordham students were flexible and amiable throughout the trip.  Poor weather during the trip added twists to their arrival, stay, AND departure. (Their incoming flight was diverted to Kyiv.  A snowstorm prevented the students from reaching the Lviv Opera House to see “Swan Lake” and their return flight to New York was cancelled!)


In the garden of previous prison

Regardless of weather, the students saw and learned a lot.  We made excursions around the city including a visit to Potocki Palace, a French-architectural marvel that was the residence of the Austrian Minister-President, Alfred Jozef-Potocki.  Students also had an eye-opening visit to a former KGB political prison, Tyurma na Lonskoho Museum, in the city center.  And the students did eventually make a performance of “Swan Lake” at Lviv’s beautiful opera house.  They even reached the top of “High Castle” to see a panoramic view of Lviv. 


Students in new Collegium of UKU

I enjoyed working with Professor Nikolaenko to prepare the itinerary in the weeks leading up to the trip.  It was great to finally meet her and the students and explore Lviv together. Excursions to coffee shops and restaurants with a variety of cuisine dotted their trip.  The students genuinely (and a little surprisingly to me) enjoyed much of Ukraine’s local cuisine: holobsti, varenyky, and cyrnyk just to mention a few dishes. 

The students reminded me of the differences between America and Ukraine.  And I loved hearing their first impressions (and lasting impressions) of the public transportation, road conditions, and weather conditions in Lviv. I will always have a soft spot for this group! I hope some of them return to Ukraine in the future and share all they saw and learned to others back in New York.  I can’t wait for more groups to make the trip out to Lviv and I hope they will be as great as Fordham University’s visit.