The 24th Annual Saskatchewan Book Awards were held April 29, 2017 at the Conexus Arts Centre in Regina, Saskatchewan. The awards celebrate excellence in writing and publishing. Prof. Bohdan Kordan’s No Free Man: Canada, the Great War, and the Enemy Alien Experience was shortlisted and then selected as the recipient of the Jennifer Welsh Award in Scholarly Writing. The award is presented for the best contribution in book form to scholarly work in a particular area that “build[s] on theoretical work within a community of scholars and contribute[s] to the creation and transmission of knowledge.”
Selected by a jury of distinguished academics, the panel described the book as “a comprehensive and compelling study.” Said to be “engaging” and “well-researched”, the work was cited for its wider significance “as we confront divided loyalties and the cultural impact of immigration both in yesteryear and today.”
Following a successful career with the Ministry of Education, Nadia Prokopchuk was appointed as the English as an Additional Language (EAL) Program Specialist in the Department of Curriculum Studies, College of Education at the University of Saskatchewan. On May 1, 2017 she joins the PCUH as a Faculty Affiliate. After earning both a B. Ed. and M. Ed at the University of Saskatchewan, Ms. Prokopchuk held several administrative roles with Saskatoon Catholic Schools, including assistant to the Director of Education. In 2000, Nadia accepted a position with the Ministry of Education as a provincial languages consultant and later Senior Program Manager for EAL and heritage languages, a position she held until retirement from the ministry in 2016. Nadia’s long-term research interests focus on effective language education, EAL teacher education and use of the Common Framework of Reference (CFR) as a comprehensive language reference tool. Current international projects include an advisory role on the curriculum reform committee of Ukraine’s education ministry and visiting lecturer at Ternopil National Pedagogical University. Nadia is a member of the University of Saskatchewan Senate and the Saskatchewan-Ukraine Relations Advisory Committee.
Each Spring the University of Saskatchewan Students’ Union (USSU) celebrates excellence on the University of Saskatchewan campus through teaching awards and awards for excellence outside the teaching field. Students from UKR 217 nominated Prof. Nadya Foty-Oneschuk for a USSU Teaching Excellence Award, filling out an evaluation survey. Based on the numerical results of the evaluation, the USSU selected the ten winners for this year’s University of Saskatchewan Students’ Union Teaching Excellence Award, choosing Prof. Foty-Oneschuk as one of the recipients.
Prof. Nadya Foty-Oneschuk, a PCUH Affiliate, is responsible for Ukrainian language instruction at all levels on the University of Saskatchewan campus. The PCUH directly supports Ukrainian language instruction on campus through financial subsidies for Ukrainian language course offerings.
The University of Saskatchewan Ukrainian Students’ Association and The Ukrainian Canadian Students’ Union (SUSK), together with dFilms, hosted a free pre-screening of the feature film “Bitter Harvest” in the auditorium of the Medical Sciences Bldg, March 1, 2017. Saskatoon was selected as one of four cities across Canada for the screening of this important film. The evening event boasted a turnout of 300 + people. In attendance were Members of the Legislative Assembly. Following the conclusion of the film, Katya Khartova led the audience in the singing of Vichnaya Pamyat (Memory Eternal) in remembrance of the millions of victims of the Holodomor (Death by Hunger) — the Soviet genocide. The pre-screening provided a tremendous opportunity to bring public awareness to this tragic event in human history.
On February 15, 2017, the first-ever University of Saskatchewan Ukrainian Students Association (USUSA) research colloquium was held at STM. The objective of the colloquium was to showcase before a general audience the research being conducted by graduate and undergraduate students studying in the Ukrainian Studies field and/or writing on subjects that pertain to Ukraine. Reflecting student interests, the presentations were on a wide range of topics. Ashley Halko-Addley spoke on the rituals of baptism in the Ukrainian Orthodox Church as a rite of incorporation. Nykole King examined the historical sources for competing ethnic and civic nationalisms in modern Ukraine. Marnie Howlett, an MA candidate in the Dept. of Political Studies, looked at how the idea of a ‘Ukrainian nation’ was reconceptualised as a political community in the wake of the Maidan. Meanwhile, Mitch Dowie, also an MA Political Studies student, discussed Stephen Harper’s foreign policy engagement with Ukraine during the recent conflict using a Neo-classical Realist framework.
The evening affair was well-attended by a supportive and enthusiastic crowd of students and community members. Conversation carried over to a reception held in the Atrium. The success of the event suggests that it will be an annual affair. A shining example of the extraordinary energy of the Ukrainian student body on the UofS campus, the colloquium represents not only academic excellence academically but demonstrates strong organizational leadership.
The event was sponsored by the Prairie Centre for the Study of Ukrainian Heritage which provides the USUSA with financial assistance and institutional support.
Professor Marta Dyczok of the University of Western Ontario delivered the 20th annual Mohyla Lecture the title of which was What’s Changed? The Evolution of Ukraine’s Media Since Independence. Author of Ukraine’s Euromaidan: Broadcasting through Information Wars with Hromadske Radio (2016), Dr. Dyczok is a specialist on political developments in the post-Soviet space with special interest in the media.
Prof. Dyczok spoke of the evolving nature of the media landscape in Ukraine, drawing attention to the impact of globalization and the continuing influence of Russia on both the telecommunications and digital platforms. She emphasized the important role of public broadcasting and the politics around the creation of Hromadkse Radio and Hromadske TV. Noting the recent transformation of Ukraine’s state media into a public broadcaster, Prof. Dyczok suggested this was a possible ‘game-changer’ in as much as it might allow for greater accountability and transparency – an important consideration in the context of the hybrid Russo-Ukrainian conflict (which extends to the information sphere) and the wider efforts at democratization.
The 2017 Mohyla Lecture, delivered February 17, 2017, marks the 20th anniversary of the Mohyla Lecture Series. Created at St. Thomas More, it is the premier academic event devoted to Ukrainian Studies at the University of Saskatchewan. This year’s event was co-sponsored by the Ukrainian Canadian Congress – Saskatchewan Provincial Council. The event was organized and hosted by the Prairie Centre for the Study of Ukrainian Heritage.
On December 1-2, Ukrainian Oral History Association (UOHA) hosted in Kharkiv an international Symposium “Oral History in Times of Change: Social Contexts, Political Challenges, Academic Standards”. The conference marked UOHA’s 10th anniversary and was organized at Karazin National University in cooperation with Prairie Centre for the Study of Ukrainian Heritage. Dr. Khanenko-Friesen traveled to Kharkiv to deliver a Keynote address “How Oral History Changed the Nation: Truth and Reconciliation in Canada.” The presentation was well received and offered an opportunity for the conference participants to consider various models of national reconciliation in post-conflict societies around the world.
The Prairie Centre for the Study of Ukrainian Heritage offers scholarships in support of University of Saskatchewan graduate students at the MA level, who are working on Ukraine, Ukrainian-Canadian or other subjects relevant to the Ukrainian experience. MA Scholarships in the amount of $1500 are provided in direct support of the thesis-writing phase for students registered with the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Graduate Studies and enrolled in a graduate degree program. In 2015-16, Mitch Dowie, an MA candidate in the Department of Political Studies, was awarded a scholarship for his thesis proposal “Agency and Moral Clarity: Stephen Harper’s post-Maidan Ukraine Policy.” The expected date of completion is Fall 2017.