My favorite part of the summer Language Institute in L'viv, Ukraine was the daily fusion of academics with cultural experiences. At the beginning of the program I knew no Ukrainian and had to rely on Russian or English to accomplish simple tasks. After six weeks I was able to spend an evening conversing with my host family about Ukrainian society, politics, and culture at some length and with fairly proficient command of the basic grammar of the Ukrainian language. Interacting with Ukrainians on a daily basis gave me a glimpse into not only their daily routines, but their thoughts on life, their country, and the world around them.
I learned more about the obvious cultural and economical differences between the West and East in Ukraine but was able to put it into historical and political contexts. Language experience and instruction was exemplary.
This program was fantastic. I cannot even pick just one thing to describe everything was remarkable. The beautiful city of L'viv, the many cafes, the relationships I made with professors and our host family, and just in general learning to understand the history and culture of an amazing country. It was a very personal program that was carefully adapted to meet the needs and interests of each student.
The university we studied with was not only prestigious but also very welcoming and friendly. We had contact and lectures from a variety of professionals in one of the oldest and renown universities in the country. The excursions to other parts of the country were rewarding and fascinating.