The GI Welcomes Nine Students from Ukraine

Sunday, June 12, 2022
by Sid Heeg

In Spring 2022, UW welcomed thirty-four Ukrainian students whose, education had been disrupted by the war, to continue their studies at Waterloo. They were sponsored by the Waterloo Artificial Intelligence Institute (Waterloo.AI).

Waterloo.AI is committed to working with the artificial intelligence industry to develop systems in areas such as disease detection and treatment, understanding language and emotion, and vehicle navigation. It has a wide range of applications for AI within health, finance, security, and more.

By welcoming the Ukrainian students, Waterloo has afforded them the opportunity to continue their degrees and research. The University has launched a fund to support these students and has asked the community to consider donating to the Students At-Risk Fund. On June 30th 2022, the student in the Waterloo.AI program came to tour the GI, and since then, we have welcomed nine new members from the program Anastasiia Avksientieva, Halyna Padalko, Karina Sukhina, Nazarii Vadymovych Kulyk, Severyn Balaniuk, Stepan Boiko, Vasyl Chomko, Vladyslav Shein, and Vsevolod Slavinskyi into our community as members and residents.

While studying and working, they have also taken the time to get involved in local political events to add their voices and concerns to what is happening in their home country. One such GI member, MA student Halyna Padalko (Global Governance), spoke at the Pugwash Conference on Science and World Affairs on October 21st. Halyna was part of a panel titled “NATO: Direction, Strategic Concept and Post-Ukraine Expansion.” There, she shared Ukrainian viewpoints on the situation as part of an extensive discussion dedicated to the challenges related to international security and Canada’s role and applications of its own foreign policy. She reflected on the event, saying, “I respect our experts with their aspirations of peacebuilding and the diversity of thought presented at all panels. But sometimes in history, we have to fight for peace and our future security even if it sounds like an oxymoron.”