For a year now, VŠE has been helping Ukraine

A full year has passed since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Since the very beginning of the invasion, the Prague University of Economics and Business and its faculties have been doing their utmost to mitigate the impact of the situation on Ukrainian students. Therefore, they offer both one-off and long-term forms of support.

“The war in Ukraine is a huge tragedy that affects millions of lives. We are glad that at least some of the young people affected by this conflict can be provided with shelter and education at the University of Economics, which gives them hope for a successful life,” agree Assoc. Ing. Pavel Hnát, Ph.D., Vice-Rector for Teaching and Quality Management and prof. Ing. Hana Machková, CSc., Vice-Rector for International Relations.

“There was nothing to wait for, from the very first day we started collections and projects to help Ukraine. We found out what was most needed and at the same time what we could manage. The aid had to be quick and effective,” explains Ing. Štěpán Staněk, a student senator of AS VŠE, who helped with the coordination from the very beginning of the invasion. For example, the VŠE is organizing a fundraiser to cover the costs of accommodation and basic living needs of Ukrainian students and academics of the VŠE, including their families, and to pay for scholarships for Ukrainian students who find themselves in a difficult life situation.

As soon as in spring 2022, the VŠE provided the first family members of its students with accommodation in the premises of the training centre in Prague, Točna. Additional, albeit limited, capacity was available in the dormitories.

In April 2022, Prof. Ludmila Chizhevska, who had to leave Ukraine with her daughter and mother while her husband remained to fight in the Ukrainian army, and Dr. Kataryna Shymanska from the Polytechnic State University in Zhytomyr were admitted as visiting professors at the VŠE.

“The College of Economics also accepted 34 Ukrainian student refugees into the Freemover program in the spring of 2022. All those interested in participating in the program underwent a personal interview in English,” adds Mgr. Věra Koukalová, spokesperson of the Prague University of Economics and Business.

The individual faculties of the VŠE also joined in the assistance. The Faculty of Management provided a community centre for refugees from Ukraine, language courses in basic Czech language, interpreting and translation services, and help with babysitting while completing the necessary formalities for staying in the Czech Republic. These are just some of the activities that the Faculty of Management of the University of Economics in Prague engaged in to locally assist refugees from Ukraine who came to the region of Jindřichův Hradec.

The Department of Multimedia of the FIS VŠE participated in the organization of the benefit concert Playing for Ukraine, which was broadcasted by the band Čechomor in cooperation with the Kooperativa Foundation and the Slovak group Kandráčovci.

The Faculty of Business and Economics came to the aid of Ukrainian students who were directly or indirectly affected by the events in Ukraine. These included apologies for courses, requests for extensions of study deadlines and requests for interruption of studies.

During the summer holidays, the VŠE financed from the transparent account the stay of Ukrainian children in a suburban camp organized by the Centre for Physical Education and Sport (CTVS).

Rohlik in cooperation with Faculty of International Relations decided to support the students of the VŠE with a purchase worth CZK 4,000 each month.

“Currently, 537 Ukrainians are studying in accredited programmes at the VŠE, 204 of them in the first year. Those who applied to study last year had their admission fees waived,” confirms the Vice-Rector of Education. Pavel Hnát.

On 3 February 2023, a group of Ukrainian children with special needs and their parents visited the University of Economics. They came to the Czech Republic to the town of Sázava for a two-week convalescent stay. The visit to Prague and the VŠE was organized for them by Professor Ludmila Cizhevska from the University of Zhytomyr, together with the Vice-Principal of the Prague University of Economics and Business, prof. Ing. Hana Machková, CSc., and the Department of Foreign Relations.

The head of the department, Ing. Dana Brázdová: “As far as my personal experience is concerned, I have to say that I am very happy that within the framework of my work and thanks to the activities and support of the VŠE, I can be directly involved in helping Ukrainian students and teachers almost on a daily basis from the end of February 2022. Some of these relationships have already grown into personal friendships. I am very much looking forward to one day being able to take advantage of all the personal invitations and visit my new friends at their home in Ukraine.”