Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy will address Stanford students virtually and participate in a Q&A moderated by Michael McFaul this upcoming Friday on Ukraine’s fight for democracy and the need for help.
The event, hosted by the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI), will begin at 9 a.m. at CEMEX auditorium. Access to the event is limited to members of the Stanford community with tickets.
The address comes amid the three-month war between Russia and Ukraine that has seen Zelenskyy become a resistance symbol for Ukraine and Russia’s top target. The war has sparked considerable action on campus both from individuals personally impacted by the war and from student groups — Ukrainian students and allies organized a rally only a few hours after the initial invasion to condemn Russia’s actions and call campus to action. A group of students also assisted in coordinating the delivery of medical relief supplies to Ukraine and called on the University to issue a campus wide statement.
Since the war began on Feb. 24, Zelenskyy has made a special effort to reach college students across the United States — in a May 16 event hosted by the Association of American Universities, Zelenskyy spoke to several colleges about how American universities can help rebuild Ukraine’s higher education sector after the devastation afflicted by the war.
During the event, he told university administrators and faculty how to support Ukrainian academics who need help and aid their return back to Ukraine after the war, according to Harvard Magazine. He also encouraged American university students to participate in Ukraine’s fight against Russia.
“If you don’t want to be a victim or an indifferent bystander,” Zelenskyy told the event’s participants, “you should instead be fighters for democracy.”