Hanna Hellquist, State Secretary to Sweden’s Minister for International Development, called her meeting with European Humanities University (EHU) students and alumni "inspiring." Visiting EHU's campus in Vilnius with a delegation of Swedish officials and diplomats, Hellquist said she was fascinated to hear about EHU students' plans to use the opportunities available to them at EHU to connect to the world around them.
Hellquist was accompanied by Hilde Grönblad-Ericson, Deputy Director of Eastern Europe and Central Asia Department at Sweden's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Cecilia Ruthström-Ruin, Ambassador of Sweden to Lithuania, Stefan Eriksson, Ambassador of Sweden to Belarus, and Kristina Henschen, Coordinator on Belarus at the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA).
The Swedish delegation was interested in EHU students’ vision of the future and how they will use the education they received as well as how national identity is preserved at EHU. Participating EHU students demonstrated their active involvement in projects that make an impact on Belarus, emphasizing their sense that they can do a lot for Belarus while studying at EHU in Vilnius.
Meeting with EHU Founder and Rector Dr. Anatoli Mikhailov and Vice-Rectors Dr. Aliaksandr Kalbaska, Dr. Darius Udrys, and Dr. Irena Vaišvilaitė, Hellquist noted that Sweden's support for EHU is part of an overall increase in support for Belarus and an indication of Sweden's commitment to development in the region. Dr. Mikhailov expressed thanks and appreciation for Sweden's consistent and substantial commitment to supporting EHU as it continues to provide Belarusian students with the kind of education they cannot obtain in their homeland.
The European Humanities University is a private, non-profit liberal arts university founded in Minsk in 1992. Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, the university has been headquartered in Vilnius, Lithuania since authorities expelled it from Belarus in 2004. It serves nearly 2,000 mostly Belarusian students, offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs and promoting research in the humanities and social sciences.