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Opportunities for Ukrainian students abroad

Updated: Jul 17, 2023

How to spend your time abroad efficiently and get your career improved

Having received working permits and the possibility to continue their education in the UK, many Ukrainian students show an active interest in studying at universities and colleges. A range of career perspectives and possibilities to learn from best practices in their related industries has been offered to Ukrainians since the Russian invasion of their country. Afterward, a future return of human capital to Ukraine would positively impact the Ukrainian labour market, hence the economy.

In 2022 the Embassy of Ukraine in the United Kingdom signed an agreement with the biggest Ukrainian Student Union and promised their support for joint initiatives in the future.

Loughborough University partnered with two Ukrainian universities (Odesa I. I. Mechnikov National University and O. M. Beketov National University of Urban Economy in Kharkiv) in the framework of the twinning initiative aimed to support students and researchers during the war in running their studies smoothly.

Doctoral researcher at Loughborough University Victoria Startseva says that the Ukrainian community’s activities, such as conferences and forums, can serve as a voice of Ukraine in Europe in these difficult times.

“The students’ proactive position abroad is extremely important for staying within media attention”, - says Victoria. The project she is developing, the Ukraine Eurointegration platform, aims to help displaced women and youth to adapt to their host countries and to bring all learned practices and skills back to their homeland after the war.

“On arrival to the UK, a person needs some time to understand what steps should be taken to go on in life. Our organization, the Ukraine Eurointegration Platform, has a certain number of people that want to obtain requalification in British universities. We want to support them in these initiatives because we believe that in post-war Ukraine there will be a strong need for new ideas and startups to rebuild the country, and western practices the Ukrainians can learn in their host countries would form a solid base for the reconstruction of Ukraine. The core focus of our organization is human capital development through assistance in education and requalification of displaced Ukrainians with the purpose of their significant contribution to post-war Ukraine’s recovery.”

She highlights the necessity of forming a clear understanding of one’s educational or professional objective as well as creating a road map of potential steps to be taken to reach that goal. This would significantly save time in searching for possibilities in the host country.

“There should be a clear vision of what you want to achieve and how to get there from A to Z. I know that in spring and early summer, there will be many job fairs where top companies would offer possibilities of internships. This could be a nice chance for the Ukrainians. Planning your steps in advance is always a plus. Nowadays all Ukrainians have limitless opportunities, so the time spent abroad has to be productive and beneficial for everyone who is trying to build a good career or gain new skills.”

Alternatively, due to the war many universities in Ukraine switched to online teaching and offered joint programs in cooperation with foreign universities that gives a possibility to obtain a double university diploma.

According to some data, a large percentage of displaced Ukrainians are young people, including students, who have got long-term visas to the UK. Indeed, many of them see the opportunity to study abroad as a chance to improve their qualification, which would be welcomed in post-war Ukraine.

“In the context of social reformation and Ukraine’s rebuilding it is worth mentioning a great opportunity that the Bohdan Havrylyshyn family foundation can give to future leaders. The Youth Change Ukraine programme is for active, socially and politically conscious young people who strive to change their country for the better. I encourage everyone to apply, everyone who has a vision and bravery, and feels the leadership characteristics inside.”

“Depending on the student’s preferences, those who want to start their careers in cultural diplomacy should search for available internships in governmental institutions or NGOs, such as the Ukrainian Institute in London, Ukrainian Institute at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, or Chatham House, also known as Royal Institute of International Relations.

“Ukraine will need not only financial investments after the war; our country will also need back its biggest treasure - the people: women, youth, and kids. Everyone already knows us, Ukrainians, as a strong nation, but the hardest task we are going to have is still ahead. So, the months spent abroad should be used efficiently so that, when the time comes, the contribution of the returned Ukrainian refugees is beneficial to all.”

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