The Art of Daily Practice and Conversations

It’s a little bit surprising to look at the calendar and think that half of my first semester in Vladivostok is already gone. Seven weeks seem to have effortlessly drifted by in strict contention with my own efforts at learning the Russian language. I can say that my knowledge of Russian when I arrived in […]

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Minorities Abroad: Additional Resources

This site isn’t the only resource for minority students studying in Russia, Eurasia, and Eastern Europe! Below is a collection of interesting and useful sites from around the web, featuring videos, interviews, and much more. (Thanks to the many folks on ADSEEES and SEELANGS who have shared them!) If you’d like to suggest an additional […]

Terrell Starr in Kyiv

…what I did enjoy about Eastern Europe, especially Ukraine, was that I was able to make many breakthroughs on race with locals that I have yet to experience in the United States. Instead of entrenching in their racial ignorance, Ukrainians were honest about their naiveté and open to learning about a different culture. In the […]

16 Ways Studying Abroad is Just Like Harry Potter

Did you ever stop to think about the fact that, technically, Harry Potter was also studying abroad? Here are 16 ways that Harry’s adventures are likely to be just like yours.   1. When you first decide you’re going abroad, you’re in a state of shock- you can hardly believe it’s real! 2. Getting on […]

7 Ways Study Abroad is a Second Childhood

After settling in with a host family in Ukraine, I’ve looked back on my notes from my first couple of weeks abroad and come to a realization – in a lot of ways, Abroad-Olivia is a child, just a little bit bigger. I’ve compiled these notes to make a list of seven reasons why living […]

Where Are All the Subway Toilets?

The Village is a Russian-language publication in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Kiev that seeks to inform locals about their various cities, upcoming events, urban changes, and history. The following is an interesting entry from a series of short articles geared to answer the “strangest questions about city life” in the cities covered by the publication. […]

TORFL Exam Experiences in Kyiv

Test of Russian as a Foreign Language (TORFL) Exam Experiences in Kyiv www.sras.org/torfl While in Kiev this summer, I took advantage of the opportunity to take the TORFL exam as part of my Russian language courses there. This is a valuable experience I would recommend to anyone studying Russian abroad in the former Soviet Union. Below […]

Kimberly in Kiev

Minorities Abroad Project Name: Kimberly St. Julian Destination: Kiev and Odessa, Ukraine Time Abroad: Summer 2013 Ethnic Self-identification: African-American When my thesis advisor told me that I had to go to Ukraine to perform archival research for my MA thesis, I was unhappy to say the least. This was due to two reasons: a) I […]

Chernobyl Tour

Chernobyl Tour/Чернобыль Тур Chernobyl-tour.com Tours should be booked two weeks in advance One-day round-trip tour from Kyiv – $165 The town of Chernobyl, Ukraine is directly connected with arguably the most famous – or infamous – disaster in nuclear history: the explosion at Reactor #4 of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) on 26 April, […]

National Museum of the History of the Great Patriotic War in Kyiv

National Museum of the History of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945/Национальный Музей Истории Великой Отечественной Воины 1941-1945 Годов www.warmuseum.kiev.ua Main exhibition 10:00 to 17:00 Tuesday through Sunday 5 UAH students / 15 UAH adults (guided tour included in SRAS fees for NovaMova)  As a student of Russian and East European history, one of the […]

Why do Russians Clap on Planes?

The Village is a Russian-language publication in Moscow, St. Petersburg, and Kiev that seeks to inform locals about their various cities, their upcoming events, changes, and history. The following are two interesting entries from a series of short articles geared to answer the “strangest questions about city life” in the cities covered by the publication. […]

The Trouble with English

Before heading to St. Petersburg, SRAS coordinator, April Djakoniya, asked each of us to write down any volunteer opportunities we wanted to pursue. When studying Russian in America, one of the most helpful resources for me was native speaker volunteers, who were willing to sit through my poor Russian speaking and still always be very […]

Traveling Platzkart on Ukrainian Trains

Mention train travel in the former Soviet Union, and almost inevitably the discussion will at some point turn to the infamous “platzkart,” or third-class wagons. For those Westerners who have never traveled platzkart, the concept has taken on an almost horror-story-like quality over the past few decades, conjuring up images of cramped, uncomfortable quarters and […]

PinchukArtCentre in Kyiv

PinchukArtCentre 1/3-2, “А” Block, Velyka Vasylkivska / Baseyna Street ул. Большая Васильковская/Бассейная 1/3-2, блок А, Бессарабский квартал http://pinchukartcentre.org/ Tuesday – Sunday, 12:00 to 21:00 Free admission PinchukArtCentre.org The PinchukArtCentre, located near the center of downtown Kyiv, resulted from a combination of art and oligarchy. Founded by Ukrainian businessman Viktor Pinchuk— who has an estimated net […]

Holosiivskyi National Park in Kyiv

Holosiivs’kyi Park, named after M.T. Rylsky / Голосiiвський парк iменi М.Т. Рильського Holosiivsk’ky District Голосiiвський район Metro Station Голосiiвська (Blue Line) Monastery Website: Goloseevo.com.ua Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv website: www.univ.kiev.ua Various attractions within the park hold their own hours of operation, but the park itself is open to the public all day, every […]

Museum of the Strategic Rocket Forces in Pervomaysk

Museum of the Strategic Rocket Forces/ Музей Ракетных Войск Стратегического Назначения 10:00 to 17:00 daily 1025 hryvnias for full excursion through NovaMova (included in SRAS programs) www.rvsn.com.ua Sitting peacefully amidst the sunflower fields and apricot trees of the central Ukrainian countryside, the Museum of the Strategic Rocket Forces near the town of Pervomaysk (Первомайск) once […]

Keeping the Faith (Catholicism) in Kyiv

For some, traveling abroad can be as much a spiritual journey as a physical one, and tourists are often encouraged to visit religious relics and places of worship for their history, culture, and architecture. For me, a practicing Catholic who has now spent a couple of months living in Kyiv, this internship/study abroad experience has […]

Ukraine in Miniature Park in Kyiv

Ukraine in Miniature/Украина в Миниатуры Park in Kyiv Brovarsky Avenue 9V, Hidropark/ Броварски 9В, Гидропарк 10:00 – 17:00 daily 10 hryvnias Kyiv boasts a rising skyline of new apartment complexes and an expanding metropolitan area of more than five million people, yet the city seems particularly interested with life in miniature. Not only is there […]

Central Museum of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Kyiv

Central Museum of the Armed Forces of Ukraine/ Центральный Музей Вооруженных Сил Украины in Kyiv 31 Grushevskogo Street/31 Грушевского Улица 10:00 – 18:00 daily (closed on Mondays) 10 hryvnias  The grandly named Центральный Музей Вооруженных Сил Украины, or Central Museum of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, offers visitors an engaging and comprehensive trip through the […]

Dreamtown: Shopping and Entertainment in Kyiv

Dreamtown: Shopping and Entertainment in Kyiv Оболоньский просол, 1А Киев Located between Minska and Obolon metro stations Dreamtown is where American mall meets Disney world – in Kyiv, Ukraine. From shopping to delicious food to exciting activities, this is much more than any shopping center. While visiting Dreamtown won’t deepen your understanding of Ukrainian history […]

O’Panas Ukrainian Restaurant

O’Panas Ukrainian Restaurant / О’Панас, Ресторан Київ, 03124, парк ім. Тараса Шевченка, вул.Терещенківська, 10 Daily (Monday-Sunday): 8:00am – 12:00am Meals from $12 Opanas.com.ua Taras Shevchenko Park (Шевченка) in downtown Kyiv is a popular outdoor venue for recreation, socializing, and enjoying ice cream (мороженое), beer (пиво), and/or kvas (квас) from street-vending booths. It is conveniently triangulated […]

St. Panteleimon Cathedral & Feofaniya Park in Kyiv

St. Panteleimon Cathedral & Feofaniya Park Собор Сятово Пантелемона и Парк Феофания ул. Академика Лебедева, 32, Киев Take the metro to Lybidska, take marshutka 548 to the park Tucked away in the outskirts of Kyiv, in the Holiivs’ki district, lies St. Pantelemion’s Cathedral and Feofaniya Park. This place makes for a great day away from […]

Kyiv Metro

Kyiv Metro / Київський метрополітен (or Київське метро) Opens daily between 5:30am and 6:00am (depending on the station) Closes daily at midnight Fares: 2грн ($0.25) per trip Unlimited half- or whole-month plans available: half-month: 48 грн ($6.00) | whole-month: 95 грн ($12.50) www.metro.kiev.ua If you make a trip to Kyiv, you’ll inevitably encounter the city […]

A Weekend at the Dacha

During my Russian studies at Indiana University over the past two years, the concept of a “dacha” or Soviet-era summer home always intrigued me. While my family has taken multiple vacations during which we stayed in cabins in Indiana or the Great Smoky Mountains, we—like most Americans—were happy to return to our permanent home. Yet […]

Beer in Ukraine

Mention alcohol in connection with any of the post-Soviet states, particularly Russia or Ukraine, and Westerners usually envision copious amounts of vodka being consumed by raucous and sweaty men. Like all stereotypes, the typical Western perception of drinking in Russia and Ukraine contains some elements of truth, but while vodka is still very popular here, […]

Kyiv’s National Museum of the History of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945

The National Museum of History of the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 Національний музей історії Великої Вітчизняної Війни 1941-1945 Kyiv, 01015, Lavrska St., 24 Open Tuesday – Sunday: 10:00-17:00 (Usually closed on Mondays) Admission: Adults: 10грн (~$1.50) / Students: 5грн (~$0.75) Staff -led tour: 40грн for the group (~$5) in Ukrainian/Russian Photo permit: 10грн (~$1.50) […]

Varenichnaya Katusha Restaurant in Kyiv

Вареничная Катюша ул. Червоноармійська, 60 (Chervonoarmiis’ka Street, 60), Kиев 9:00 to 23:00 Meals from $10 www.katysha.com.ua “Вареничная Катюша” is a self-described “chain of restaurants in the Soviet style” in Kyiv, according to the official restaurant website. With an expansive network of locations throughout the Ukrainian capital, all of which feature their own unique decorations and […]

Puzata Khata in Kyiv

Puzata Khata / Пузата Хата in Kyiv Контрактовая Площадь, 2/1, Подол Mon-Sun 7:00-23:00 puzatahata.com.ua Пузата Хата is chain of Ukrainian cafeterias that serves great food at affordable prices. The name literally translated means “Hut of the Pot Belly,” and their tasty options will be sure to fill you up! Additionally, the wide variety is sure […]

National Museum of Chernobyl in Kyiv

National Museum of Chernobyl / Национальный музей Чорнобиль Kyiv, 04071, Khoryv Lane, 1 Open Monday – Saturday: 10:00 – 18:00 Last Admission: Monday – Saturday at 17:00 Closed: Sunday and last Monday of each month Admission: 10грн (~$1.50) Personal tour with electronic audio device (1 hour): 50грн (~$6) Staff -led tour (1 hour): 40грн for […]

TEDxKyiv Conference: Ideas Worth Spreading

TEDxKyiv: (Ukrainian) Ideas Worth Spreading Annual Event http://tedxkyiv.com/ Over the last few years, the TED organization has become increasingly popular and influential through its various talks, conferences, and awards. Started in 1984 to promote “Ideas Worth Spreading,” TED—which stands for Technology, Entertainment, and Design—has become a global nonprofit whose two large, official annual conferences are […]

Cafe Prego in Kyiv

Café Prego улиться Большая Васильковская, 56 (Chervonoarmiis’ka Street, 56), Kyiv 10:00 to 23:00 Meals from $9 http://www.prego.in.ua/ru/ Eating “foreign” food in a foreign city may not offer the most authentic local dining option, but the Café Prego chain of restaurants in Kyiv offers delicious Italian and Japanese food as an alternative to Ukrainian cuisine. With […]

The National Opera of Ukraine

The National Opera of Ukraine / Національна опера України Kyiv, 01034, Volodymyrska st., 50 Convenient entertainment, rich culture, low cost Box-office hours:  Monday: – 11:00 – 19:00 All other days: from 11:00 – 19:30 Tickets starting from $2 www.opera.com.ua/en/ The National Opera Theater of Ukraine is a gem of Ukrainian and Russian culture that houses […]

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