Writers: Elina Tin and Jana Ozolina
Editor: Mariia Lysikova
Photographer: Firuza Burkitbayeva
This year, two ambitious freshmen applied for the external relations coordinator position.
You might think, can any of them handle the role that requires previous experience and knowledge about Klaipeda and Lithuania?
LCC is all about giving chances to the ones who have a vision. Let’s see what the candidates have in mind.
Katsiaryna Piakarskaya, Freshman from Belarus, International and Business Administration Major.
About Katsiaryna: She likes coffee, reading books, and good parties. Her favorite day of the week is, of course - Friday!
• What inspired you to make a promotional video?
It was a very long process for me to come up with an idea, with a really good idea. One morning I just woke up, and I thought I needed to do something creative, something unique in comparison to other candidates. During their videos, people just tried to explain their thoughts, their goals, their aims. I wanted to be different, be extraordinary, and create an art piece.
• What was the message of the video?
I didn’t want to create a special message just because my position covers so many aspects of university life. There are so many aims, purposes, opportunities that can be developed if I will be a leader of this position, so the video was left for interpretation.
• What do you hope you can improve by being in this position?
I’ve been here for just five weeks, but I have already noticed that people from other universities don’t treat us as Lithuanian university. It seems that we live in a kind of vacuum. If other university staff members share my ideas, we can find the best solution to build strong partnerships with other universities. For example, Klaipeda University. KU is our neighbor, and I think it would be great if we could organize an event together. Also, I think that it would be a great experience for other universities to look at the way the international community studies and communicate with each other.
• I read your introduction; you want to connect with universities outside Klaipeda, so which ones do you think would be cool to be connected with?
I think that the best one will be the Vilnius University and Vytauto Didziojo university, just because I know that it is a really high ranked university. I know there are a lot of foreigners in this university just like at LCC International University. Probably we can share experience, some educational systems with each other. Maybe we will find something new for our university.
• Since you are interested in volunteering, how can we together volunteer with other universities?
First of all, I think that we do need to create a volunteering club here at LCC and then we need to point out the main purposes. Also, when it is done, we can make a proposal to Vilnius University, and for example, they can visit us. Together, we can participate in Klaipeda's city events or we can go to Vilnius together with our volunteering team to participate in their events. Since we are a North American-style university, I think we can look at American style volunteering and find something suitable for us.
Yuliya Odynets, Freshman from Ukraine, International Relations and Development Major.
About Yuliya: She has published her own book, is passionate about traveling, volunteered for the United Nations, adores jazz, and has been writing a diary her whole life.
• Do you have any experience with leadership positions?
Before coming to LCC, I worked for a social project. I was responsible for making partnerships with different organizations and we fundraised as well. The job required a lot of communication and persuasion skills. Oftentimes, I had to communicate with people who were in higher standing positions than me, and I often had to work overtime. It was quite a useful experience that can help me in the StuCo position.
• What outcomes do you hope to reach for LCC during your lead as external relations coordinator?
This year we have a chance to become well known among other universities. I actually think that LCC has a great potential of becoming a Lithuanian Cambridge or Harvard. I know its ambitious, but it’s possible. I hope that more people will find out about LCC across the world. I would like to explore more opportunities for cooperation online. Corona should in no way stop students from pursuing their goals. There could be cooperation between universities online so there could be different events, meetings, we could organize some professionals or professors to talk to us. I also want to engage with organizations and businesses that are in Klaipeda. Because this is how LCC students could get more opportunities for volunteering, internships, it would also help us promote LCC within the Klaipeda community.
• What kind of partnership programs are you suggesting LCC could create?
For example, we have an international American university in Bulgaria. Their professors do online sessions for their communities. I think we could easily get involved with them and ask our professors to do something for their students and theirs for ours like exchange different webinars and lectures. Also, there could be some online events organized by students. Peer to peer approach.
• What events, volunteering possibilities, and promotions do you think Klaipeda could benefit from if LCC arranged them?
It depends on the major. For example, for business majors, they already had such an experience when they made promotional campaigns for Musangas. We should maintain the existing connection and expand to other businesses, cafes, coffee shops. For IRD majors we have some embassies and visa centers, official institutions. They are always looking for some volunteers, those who would want to learn new skills. There are some local mass media organizations in Klaipeda, they might be interested in getting students to do something for them. I think we could get involved with local schools, we could create some projects. LCC is already doing that with SLI and different camps. So I’m sure that since LCC students are very active, we will have someone who will want to volunteer as an English teacher. Opportunities are endless, we just have to explore them and bring them to life.