During May 23-27, 2022, within the framework of the Erasmus+ program, I had the opportunity to teach a course of lectures on interpretation of the text at the University of Rzeszów (Uniwersytet Rzeszowski, Kolegium Nauk Humanistycznych, Instytut Neofilologii). In addition to wonderful impressions of the city itself and the center of its academic life, this experience was extremely valuable due to the unusual professional practice, the student audience, and general perception of Ukrainian teacher at the university of high European level. Thoughts after the visit can be divided into several clusters.
Firstly, Erasmus is serious and valuable, and the fact that our university participates in such an educational project is strong proof that we are full members of European academic community. The level of knowledge of first-year master students, whom I taught, is the same as that of the master students of K-PNU Faculty of Foreign Philology (this is despite the fact that Poles specialize in translation from two languages – English and German). Similarly, students are more interested in the interactive lecture, a discussion with a teacher, and the opportunity to express their own opinion.
Secondly, English is more widespread and is in general on the higher level than in Ukraine both in the university and everyday life. The teachers of various departments (in particular, the coordinator of my stay, Agnieszka Buk, is a professor at Katedry Lingwistyki Stosowanej) communicate in English to a greater or lesser extent.
Thirdly, we have common problems: the Poles, like us, are concerned with both the admissions campaign (the number of applicants) and the employment of their graduates. Therefore, individual departments and the university in general conduct numerous promotional campaigns and systematic career guidance work, change bachelor’s and master’s programs in accordance with the demands of the labor market (for example, a component that allows teaching at school was added to the German philology educational program).
I had the opportunity to visit an open day (Dni Otwarte Uniwersytetu Rzeszowskiego), which included a job fair (Uniwersyteckie Targi Pracy). It was an interesting and useful event, a platform for direct communication between employers and graduates, the holding of which already has a certain history at the university.
And finally – Ukraine. It is everywhere: aid stations, accommodation and catering facilities for refugees, announcements about employment and free rehabilitation, opportunities to open bank accounts, document processing, legal advice and other numerous services, which hospitable Rzeszów full of yellow and blue colors, can offer. Without slogans, but sincerely and effectively.
Head of the Department of English, Doctor of Philological Sciences, Associate Professor