University Responds to the Ongoing War in Ukraine


Courtesy of Graydon Paul/Villanovan Photography

Students attended a “Rally to Support the Ukrainian People” on Mar. 6.

Erin Costa, Staff Writer

The deadly events in Ukraine and its current domestic implications have caused worldwide fear and confusion. Foreign interventions attempt to de-escalate the situation, as companies in the United States, UK, Japan, Canada and many more sanction Vladimir Putin and other notable Russian Oligarchs. The implications of these actions can be felt everywhere, with gas prices and inflation skyrocketing globally. 

At Villanova, students are unsure what is the best course of action for the United States, and many wonder if direct military action needs to be taken. 

“Seeing all the news you want to help the people of Ukraine so badly, but at the same time, you don’t want to start a war,” sophomore Isabella Coles said. “But, if Putin wants to get the rest of the USSR, why wouldn’t we send troops now to prevent further deaths? I’m just very conflicted.” 

The complicated nature of this war has incentivized the University to share several resources that may assist students in understanding the situation. On March 7, the Albert Lepage Center held a discussion to discuss the history of Ukrainian-Russian relations and how the current situation has unfolded. 

On the Villanova Media Room Website, several professors offer their expertise on the subject to those who are interested. The email [email protected] is able to answer any questions about the war, and all experts on the website are available by email. 

On Thursday, March 10 at 3:45 p.m., Campus Ministry held a Vigil at the Corr Hall steps to honor and stand with Ukraine. Following the Vigil, Campus Ministry held a Prayer for Peace within Corr Chapel.

As students at the University attempt to understand what the future holds, several attempt to assist the situation as best as they can. Senior Nelya Naida organized and advertised for the “Rally to Support the Ukrainian People,” which was held on Sunday, March 6 at 10 a.m.. 

“I was actually born in Ukraine and moved to the states when I was six months old,” Naida said. “I still have a number of family members and friends living in Ukraine today so I was really inspired to do something that would help them during this time. With this drive I hope to not only raise monetary and physical donations for Ukraine, but also to get people to recognize the strength and courage of Ukraine and its people. It’s been 19 days now of restlessness.”

This rally featured speakers including Rev. Dr. Ronald Popivchak, United States Congresswoman Madeleine Dean, United States Congresswoman Mary Gay Scanlon and Bridgeport Mayor Beth Jacksier. Notably, commentary from several members of the Ukrainian American community was also featured at the event. 

Many students supported this event and reposted its details on their Instagram stories and Facebook pages. Social media use by students has brought massive support for several fundraisers that support Ukraine, including an upcoming Alpha Chi Omega and Sigma Chi Basketball Tournament. On Sunday, March 20 from 5 to 8 p.m., these Greek Chapters will be hosting a 3v3 tournament in Jake Nevin to raise money for Ukraine. To register for this event, Venmo $30 to @Humanitarianaid4ukraine for a team, with the team’s name as the description. 

On campus, flyers advertising the Stand With Ukraine Donation Drive can be found all around. This drive will donate medicine, first aid supplies, band-aids, ibuprofen and baby formula to residents of Ukraine and those who have fled to other countries. 

Organizations including Humanitarian Aid for Ukraine, United Ukrainian Relief Committee, United Help Ukraine and Knights of Columbus Ukraine Solidarity Fund reap the benefits of the drive. To support these causes, one can Venmo a donation to @humanitarianaid4ukraine. 

At the University, the impact of this war is easily detectable with students, faculty, campus ministry and University officials all contributing in some way. Officials, faculty and ministry offer guidance and information, which allows for better understanding of the topic. Students support philanthropic efforts through advertisements for several Ukraine Support organizations on campus and on social media.