All-Ukrainian Student Forum «Youth for Ukraine. Ukraine for Youth»

On November 15-16, 2023, the All-Ukrainian Student Forum «Youth for Ukraine – Ukraine for Youth» was held in Kyiv. 

The event was organized with the financial support of Education International.

The Forum brought together more than 70 young, creative and progressive leaders of student unions from the country's leading higher education institutions. The young people discussed the main challenges facing today's students in the context of a full-scale war and the prospects for Ukraine's recovery.

The Forum was opened by Georgiy Trukhanov, President of the Trade Union of Education and Science Workers of Ukraine and Tristan Masat, Program Director of the Solidarity Center in Ukraine. David Edwards, General Secretary of Education International and Susan Hopgood President of Education International joined online. 

In his speech, the President of the Trade Union noted in particular that thousands of students and teachers have been forced to leave their homes due to the war. More than 80 universities have been damaged by enemy missiles, and 29 higher education institutions have been relocated... But the topic of the forum is the future of Ukraine and education. And the Trade Union clearly understands that security is a priority! The second is the quality of education and the third is proper jobs for graduates of higher education institutions. The Trade Union of Education and Science of Ukraine, leaders of student trade unions, and higher education clearly understand that after the war is over, the reconstruction of the state must begin, and young, professional, and talented people will be the driving force of its recovery.

The work of this platform was opened by Michael Teutsch, Head of Unit for country analysis in the European Commission's Directorate General for Education and Culture, who spoke about the areas of EU assistance in higher education. In particular, considerable attention was paid to the Erasmus+ program as an element of EU cooperation in the field of education, youth and sports. The program includes academic mobility and allows Ukrainian universities to benefit from European projects, strategies, and professional resources. The discussion continued with financial aid and support for education during the war, with the EU allocating €100 million to rebuild schools in Ukraine.

The moderator of the panel, Deputy President of the Trade Union Olha Chabaniuk, emphasized that this panel involves a discussion of understanding the role of student youth during the war and the extreme importance of their involvement after the war and invited speakers to take the floor.

Oleksandr Yarema, State Secretary of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, shared his vision and guidance. In particular, he noted that student youth is now willing and able to be extremely powerful and active. Ukrainian youth is ready to take responsibility and make decisions. And this requires knowledge, new ideas, and the desire to implement them. 

Tetiana Berezhna, Deputy Minister of Economy of Ukraine, who joined the forum online, told the participants about the achievements of the Ministry. In particular, she spoke in detail about the eRobota program, which will be funded next year due to demand, and outlined the direction of the project implemented by the EU-funded Projector Foundation, which will provide 1000 Ukrainian women IDPs with free training in the IT industry.

Daria Marchak, First Deputy Minister of Social Policy, said that the country already lacks more than 4 million workers, and there are professions that will be especially in demand and well paid. The young people who are now choosing their professional path should pay special attention to this.

Many other interesting speakers also took part in the two-day event. The discussions resulted in the following theses: even in this difficult time, you need to improve your skills, develop, learn something new to stand out in the labor market; work is a dialogue between an employee and an employer, where all the nuances can and should be discussed; Artificial Intelligence will not replace creative industries, so it is worth considering their prospects today.

The speakers wished the young people to confidently and purposefully pursue their goals, know their rights, be consistent, and use all opportunities to improve their future and the country as a whole.


International Department

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