Russian invasion of Ukraine
Some international students are uncertain whether to stay or leave amid a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine. Source: Sergey Bobok/AFP

The possible Russian invasion of Ukraine is grabbing headlines worldwide. Some international students in the country are concerned about whether they should stay or leave, but an education stakeholder has claimed that the situation at Ukrainian universities is stable.

The Ukrainian State Centre for International Education director told The PIE News that the “situation in Ukraine is stable, there is no panic”.

Previous reports said Russia has been positioning its military around the country, giving it the means to attack the country from multiple directions. Olena Shapovalova, director of the centre within the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, told the portal: “I would like to stress again that there are no dangers, no problems. The Ukrainian universities operate as usual.”

On Feb. 11, 2022, The Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office’s notice advised British nationals against all travel to Ukraine. A spokesperson said: “The safety and security of British nationals is our top priority, which is why we have updated our travel advice. We urge British nationals in Ukraine to leave now via commercial means while they remain available.”

Some international students are uncertain whether to stay or leave amid a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine. Shapovalova said any decision should be made by international students themselves.

“They always can agree on with the university about online study,” she was quoted saying. Some Ukrainian universities have introduced mixed or online studies as a result of the pandemic.

The Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky, has stated that the people are expecting de-escalation and there is no need to panic about the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Source: Sergei Supinsky / AFP

The Russian invasion of Ukraine: Up to students whether to stay or leave

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky told the BBC yesterday: “To be honest we react to the reality we have and we don’t see any withdrawal yet. We just heard about it.”

He said he thinks “all normal people expect de-escalation”, adding: “As for the threat, I have said many times that we are calm about any threats because we remember that all this did not start yesterday. This has been happening for many years.”

Education in Ukraine co-founder and CEO Tetiana Kaminska said opportunities in the country are a “worthy alternative” to prestigious universities in Europe and North America, especially for students from the Asia-Pacific region, Africa and the Middle East. Ukraine is also one of the “most preferable destinations” for aspiring students who want to study MBBS in areas such as general medicine, paediatrics, pharmacy, dentistry and surgery abroad.

According to government data, V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University and Kharkiv National Medical University are the most popular universities among international students.