Ukrainian varsities ask Indians to return or join transfer programmes

Authorities from Ukrainian universities want Indian students to resume classes, asking them to either return to campus despite risks, temporarily join online classes or enrol through varsities in other countries.

Some universities, which are in the worst-hit war zones with considerable damage to their facilities, are taking up the last option — asking students to take up “mobility” or transfer programmes. The Ukrainian universities have tied up with certain institutes in the rest of Europe where they will continue to study as their exchange students.

As the next semester for most Ukrainian universities begins on September 1, students have been given until next week to clear the fees and make a decision. Some universities have also told students that they wrote to the National Medical Council (NCM) in India as well as the Indian embassy in Ukraine. These universities said they did not get clarity from them on the decision for Ukraine-returned medical students or the validity of continuing online classes.

Dr Audhoot Nidgude, a representative of MD House in Maharashtra, said options for continuing online classes or mobility to other countries were being considered, but didn’t give any further detail. MD House is an agency that recruits students for the Bokovinian State Medical University (BSMU) in Chernivtsi, which has over 1,800 Indian students.

However, a few students of BSMU shared a letter with The Indian Express which said the university is resuming classes in offline mode for those who can come to Ukraine while online mode will be offered to those who can’t go back at the moment.

“We recommend transit visas through countries bordering the Chernivtsi region, like Moldova or Romania, to arrive at BSMU. The tuition fees have to be paid until August 26 which indicates students’ decision to continue learning at our university,” said the letter.

A student of Taras Shevchenko National Medical University in Kyiv, one of the affected areas, also confirmed it has informed students about the resumption of offline classes. The university has also said it is also trying to arrange mobility programmes in Georgia or Poland.

BSMU, in its letter, acknowledged that there are restrictions on online education in some countries but they still don’t know the official position of the NMC or the Indian Government, despite writing to them..

Students at the Kharkiv National Medical University (KNMU) said the official partner for recruiting Indian students to the varsity, Bob Trade Education Group, has offered a transfer.

Mudit Mehrotra, a third-year student at KNMU who is currently in his hometown of Varanasi, said the agency is expected to transfer students to Georgia. “The process is going on and is expected to go on till mid-October which means we can go there by then,” said Mehrotra.

However, even as students of other universities are still grappling with uncertainties, Pranjal Kaushik, who studies at the Dnipro State Medical University and is currently in Chhattisgarh’s Bhilai, said a number of options had been
offered by the varsity.

“They have offered us four formats; one option is to continue online study at the university by staying in the same country of residence. A second option is a mixed form of study if we plan to go to Dnipro, which involves online theoretical classes and practical classes. A third format is a mixed form of education with the involvement of foreign partner universities and the fourth option is to study at a partner university in an academic mobility program during one or two semesters,” he said.

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