MRU Senate To Award Badges of Honour to Assc. Prof. Medalinskas & Prof. Simanavičienė For Aid to Ukraine - MRU

10 May, 2023
MRU Senate To Award Badges of Honour to Assc. Prof. Medalinskas & Prof. Simanavičienė For Aid to Ukraine

Mykolas Romeris University’s (MRU) Senate has decided to award Senate Badges of Honour for aid to Ukraine to MRU Assoc. Prof. Alvydas Medalinskas and Public Security Academy Prof. Žaneta Simanavičienė, Head of MRU’s Business Innovation LAB.  By Senate Resolution, the Years 2022-2023 have been designated Ukraine’s Freedom Year.

The Badges of Honour will be awarded to the MRU academics during a ceremony May 17th at Bagdoniškis during MRU’s Celebration of Scientific Thought marking the anniversary of the birth of distinguished legal scholar Professor Mykolas Romeris., He was born in Bagdoniškis Manor, not far from the town of Rokiškis on May 17th, 1880.

University Employees Made Significant Contributions in helping Ukraine, which is Fighting for its Freedom.

The Senate Badge of Honour will be awarded to political scientist Alvydas Medalinskas for exceptional partnership initiatives, aid and support to Ukraine and his significant contribution to ensuring democratic processes in the European region.

According to MRU Senate Chairman Prof. Dr. Romas Prakapas, the aid of Assoc. Prof. Medalinskas and Prof. Simanavičienė have significantly contributed to MRU's commitment to help Ukraine's freedom fighters and their almost decades-long partnership and implementation of joint programmes with 26 universities in Ukraine.

Assoc. Prof. Medalinskas is a well-known Lithuanian politician and political scientist. From 2008 he lectures at Mykolas Romeris University. During the last 7 years he has also lectured at universities in the Donbas region and united an academic community and helped them to forge ties with MRU.

When the War started between Ukraine and Russia, Assoc. Prof. Medalinskas maintained contacts with EU and NATO diplomats, who had to quickly evacuate when Russia attacked Ukraine. He informed them about the situation in occupied Berdiansk. Assoc. Prof. Medalinskas continues to maintain relations with EU and NATO partners and actively informs Lithuania's citizens about the situation in Ukraine. He is an active defender of democratic values.

A Close Academic Partnership and Humanitarian Aid for Ukrainian War Refugees

Meanwhile, Prof. Žaneta Simanavičienė carried out many activities this academic year related to Ukraine. Her many activities are visible since the beginning of the War in Ukraine.

 The MRU Public Security Academy conducts many joint projects with Ukrainian researchers. Many of them were supervised by Prof. Simanavičienė. She also helped and is helping to educate doctoral students from Ukraine - the young generation of scientists. The joint projects initiated and carried out together with the Ukrainians are extremely relevant in the context of current geopolitical challenges and threats.

Prof. Simanavičienė, together with other Academy employees, mobilized the University community and non-governmental organizations to urgently help Ukrainians, who were forced to flee their homeland due to the war. Many of them found a new home in the Academy's Student dormitory. For many of them Prof. Simanavičienė became a mentor, took care of helping with food products and other necessities. She organized traditional university community celebrations together with Ukrainians. In addition, she conducted training workshops for Ukrainians on "How to Start a Business" and "Sales Management." She provided assistance in finding a job. She also organized several charity events to hep those affected by the War. 

Aid to Ukraine Brought Together Both Professors and Students During the First Days of the War

During the first weeks of the war, MRU provided shelter to war refugees from the Russian-led war in Ukraine. Students and professors from Ukrainian universities found a new home at the MRU Student House. Sometimes entire refugee families (mostly women with children) were housed in the dormitory. Members of the MRU academic community collected and provided humanitarian aid and helped them settle down in Lithuania.

Last December, at the behest of MRU Law School researcher, Baltic-Ukrainian Fund coordinator Olha Bodnar-Petrovska humanitarian aid was collected and the "MRU Caravan for Ukraine" departed for the frontlines with food, canned goods, water and non-perishable items for Ukrainian troops. In January, more humanitarian aid reached Ukraine. The goods and food was collected from MRU's academic community and the neighbouring Didlaukis academic community.