Dr. Virginijus Valentinavičius, Associate Professor at the Institute of Communication of Mykolas Romeris University (MRU), organized study excursions for the students of University of Applied Sciences in Kiel, Germany, which MRU cooperates with and runs a joint double-diploma program.
The aim of the study excursion was to provide the German students with a closer insight into regional security, illegal migration, refugees and historical memory. The group of 18 students was led by Prof. Dr. Gintaras Aleknonis, a lecturer at University of Applied Sciences in Kiel and a professor at MRU.
"The excursion is a great opportunity for German students to get to know the realities of Lithuania as a frontline state, especially since some problems - such as illegal migration - have a direct impact on Germany, as illegal migrants from Lithuania travel there first. I think that after the tour, German students may better understand why the German brigade is needed here and why it pays for Germany to invest in Lithuania's security," says Dr. Virginijus Valentinavičius.
During the excursion, the German students visited the Lithuanian State Border Guard Service checkpoint in Lavoriškės, the Cynology Centre in Mickūnai, as well as the Seimas, where they met with the Deputy Speaker of the Seimas and the Chairwoman of the Committee on European Affairs, Radvilė Morkūnaitė-Mikulėnienė, and discussed security, migration and Lithuania's European policy.
At the Department of Strategic Communication of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, the students listened to a lecture by Major Tomas Tauginas, a representative of the Department, on contemporary information warfare threats. The German students also visited the Ukrainian Centre at Vytautas Magnus University in Vilnius, where they met with the Ukrainian staff of the Centre and had the opportunity to hear personal stories of war refugees. At the end of the tour, the guests visited Grūtas Park, where they had the opportunity to learn about the history of Lithuania - the Soviet occupation.