Meet the UCC Summer Students of 2021!
Hi, my name is Andriy Shwec and I have completed my first year of studies at York University where I am majoring in History. I’m involved in the Ukrainian-Canadian community through a variety of organizations, but most notably Plast and CYM. I’m also a member of the Ukrainian Student’s Club at York where I served as the administrative assistant this past academic year.
I’m excited to work with the Ukrainian Canadian Congress this summer, and thankful for this opportunity.
Hello, everyone! My name is Anika Luteijn, and I am going into my fourth year of a History major and a French minor at the University of Victoria
Before I moved to Victoria for school back in 2018, I did not know much about my Ukrainian heritage other than perogies and Borsch. Since then, I have been very fortunate to get involved in the Ukrainian-Canadian community on campus and around Victoria, all the while learning about Ukrainian culture and language, as well as learning more about my own family’s history.
I am currently on the Executive Board of the UVic Ukrainian Students’ Society as Secretary.
Through my involvement with the UVicUSS, I have taken part in important club events to raise awareness for the Holodomor, pinched many perogies for fundraisers, and even got to see DakhaBrakha perform live!
I can’t wait to get more involved and connect with so many more individuals in the Ukrainian-Canadian community through my position at the Ukrainian Canadian Congress in Victoria this summer!
Hello everyone! My name is Laryssa Luszczki and I just finished my first year at McGill University majoring in linguistics and minoring in international relations. In the future, I hope to become an international advocate, and pursue my dream of perhaps representing Ukraine at the international level. Over the years, I have been an active member in the Ukrainian community here in Montreal by taking part in CYM, attending Ukrainian school every Saturday as a child, and dancing with Troyanda.
From an early age, I have demonstrated a passion for being Ukrainian, and this passion for my culture has only grown as I have gotten older.
I love being able to give back to my community, whether it is being a Ukrainian teacher for the Andrij Sheptysky Montreal school, a podruha at CYM Montreal during the winter schodyny or a mentor, podruha, and lifeguard at leadership camps for teenagers as well as at summer camps for kids like Verhovyna in Chertsey, Quebec, and Veselka in Acton, Ontario.
I am grateful for the people I have met, the friends that I have made, and the memories that I have created all because of my culture. I am looking forward to working with the UCC, and I cannot wait for what the future holds.
Nina Semchyshyn is entering her final year of Public Relations at Humber College, holds a BA in French Language Studies from the University of Winnipeg, and a Certificate of French Language Proficiency from McGill University.
As an active member in the Ukrainian community, Nina is an alumnus of Rusalka Ukrainian Dance Ensemble, current dancer and Fundraising Director with Desna Ukrainian Dance Company in Toronto, singer with Rossa trio in Montreal, member of CYM, Reservations Chair with Winnipeg’s Folklorama Ukraine-Kyiv Pavillion, and volunteer with UCC’s Youth Interorganizational Committee.
Throughout her educational and work experiences, Nina values community, culture, and collaboration and is thrilled to be having a part in UCC’s Community Outreach Development this summer.
Oresta is fourth year Plant Science student at the University of Guelph. This summer she is working with UCC as the Fundraising and Administrative Assistant.
Originally from New York, Oresta spent many of her summers in Toronto and feels lucky to have grown up in both the Ukrainian-American and Ukrainian-Canadian communities. She is currently the Co-President of Guelph’s Ukrainian Students Club and a podryha in PLAST Toronto, and has previously volunteered at Help Us Help camps in Ukraine.
In her spare time, Oresta enjoys running and trying her hand at her family’s traditional Ukrainian recipes.
Hello! My name is Vitalia Khmil and I am a passionate Montreal-based Ukrainian-Canadian who recently graduated from the Profesional Theatre program at Dawson College. I am very much looking forward to pursuing my studies in music at Concordia University. I enjoy reading, doing yoga, taking long walks, and going for runs, especially when I’m surrounded by nature.
I am spending the summer working as an Executive Assistant for UCC’s Montreal branch working on local and national projects. Amidst that work, I will be starting off my acting career in the Montreal industry and I am hoping to take time to create projects of my own as a writer and director.
From a young age, I started dancing with the dancing ensemble Troyanda and singing at the Montreal Ukrainian festival, keeping myself in touch with Ukrainian language, traditions, and culture. Going to Ukrainian school, CYM, and tabirs was part of my routine for years, and to this day, remain some of the best memories I’ve made over the years.
After a 2-month long trip to Ukraine in 2019, I came back even more inspired and aware of the never-ending battles Ukraine faces day-to-day, especially in these times of need.
From my perspective, being an artist means taking the initiative to create and inspire change. This summer, my hope is to contribute as much as I can to help our numerous Ukrainian communities and to be part of UCC’s long-lasting positive impact on Ukrainians across Canada.
Vladyslava is an engineering student entering her second year at the University of British Columbia. She will be joining the UCC as an Executive Assistant in Vancouver BC.
Vladyslava was born in Vinnytsia, Ukraine and moved to Canada in 2012. She is passionate about giving back to the Ukrainian Canadian community and being able to connect with other Ukrainian Canadians.
This year will be Vladyslava’s second year working as a summer student with the UCC. She is excited to be part of the UCC again and she is looking forward to getting more involved in the community.