The commencement ceremony took place in the very heart of Vilnius Old Town – St. Catherine’s Church, which was reconstructed in 18th century by Johann Glaubitz, founder of Vilnius Baroque School. EHU remains committed to both the European tradition and Belarusian roots, which is why the ceremony venue was very symbolic – it is here, in the old town of Vilnius, the Belarusian national revival began.
Among high-rank guests, who arrived to congratulate EHU alumni, were Vice-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Andrius Krivas, Ambassador of Ireland to Lithuania David Noonan, Consul of the Embassy of Finland to Lithuania Mary Ogren, a representative of the Embassy of Germany to Lithuania Ms. Salomėja Pranckienė, and other representatives of the Lithuanian state institutions and foreign diplomatic missions to Lithuania.
EHU President Prof. Anatoli Mikhailov, graduate of EHU BA program “International Law” (Class 2009), a specialist in the field of space law and present member of EHU Governing Board Artiom Anisimov and Acting Chair of the EHU Governing Board Anne Lonsdale addressed the graduates in their welcoming speeches. Artiom Anisimov wished the graduates to be confident in the face of future challenges and always remember their alma mater: “I became of the first EHU Class in Vilnius – we were just preparing foundations for our University after its re-location to Vilnius. Today I see the largest ever class, which is the brightest evidence, EHU genuinely forms European future of Belarus. Do not lose your ties with Alma mater – together we will create even better EHU for the prospective students, who are starting EHU studies on October 1”.
The results of the annual voting for the nominees of EHU’s Distinguished Alumnus Award were presented during the ceremony. This year for the 4th time in EHU history the award was presented to Yeahor Zakharko (BA “Cultural Heritage and Tourism”, 2009). Yahor was rewarded for his contribution to the implementation of cultural and musical projects in Belarus, the largest of which is Mirum Music Festival – the biggest music event in Belarus.
The most outstanding undergraduate student of the Class 2016 was announced Viktoryia Andrukhovich (BA “Visual Design and Media”), who already published a book on the history of design in Belarus. The most outstanding graduate student of the Class 2016 is Palina Skurko (MA “Historic and Cultural Heritage”), who showed outstanding academic results.
The previous academic year was a landmark for the entire EHU academic community. In March, 2016, EHU celebrated the 10th anniversary of its operation in Vilnius, Lithuania. The total of 2,787 alumni have graduated from EHU since its establishment in 1992 in Minsk. 1,953 of them graduated after EHU’s relocation to Vilnius. According to the latest alumni survey, 62.2% of EHU graduates permanently live in Belarus, where they returned to after graduation. 83.3% of them have permanent jobs, which fully or partly correspond to the direction of prior studies at EHU.
On the same evening the EHU Alumni homecoming took place in Vilnius and welcomed over 200 alumni from EHU classes of all times.