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New Ukrainian Language Class Celebrates a Milestone

Nov 20, 2023   |   Dartmouth News

Dartmouth's first-ever Ukrainian language and culture class finished the Fall term last week with a presentation of poems, stories, and songs in the Ukrainian language and in translation. The works were shared by Dartmouth students and their student collaborators from Ternopil National Technical University, who participated via Zoom from Ternopil in western Ukraine.

Thayer PhD student Larson Kaidel shares the Ukrainian poem Already Autumn along with Yuri Oliinyk, from Ternopil National Technical University and participating by Zoom, at the Intensive Ukrainian language class last week. (Photo by Ben Joel '27)

Associate Professor Victoria Somoff says the collaboration with students from Ternopil, who were paired with the students in her Fall '23 Intensive Ukrainian class, was meaningful for all the students...

...The event on Thursday, a "Student WarShop on Ukraine: Words, Music, Film, History," was a celebration of the completion of Dartmouth’s first Ukrainian language intensive.

And it also involved presentations by members of the Dartmouth Student Alliance for Ukraine on Ukrainian history, culture, and activism and final poetry, prose, and song translation projects by the fall 2023 Intensive Ukrainian students and their partners in Ternopil.

Larson Kaidel, a PhD student at Thayer School of Engineering, at first wanted to sit in on the class because a good friend is serving in a military unit in Ukraine. Somoff convinced her to enroll, and Kaidel says she's very glad she did.

"I wanted to feel more connected to my friend who was fighting and take more of an active role in preserving the culture and spreading the culture of Ukraine through language and studying the culture," Kaidel says.

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