The NICE Virtual Exchange Program: Final Thoughts

In 2023, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv implemented a program of virtual exchanges for the first time.

For five months, 30 students participated in the NICE (Network for Intercultural Competence to facilitate Entrepreneurship) virtual exchange program.


Students of the following institutes and faculties took part in the program:

  • Educational and Scientific Institute of International Relations
  • Educational and Scientific Institute of Philology
  • Educational and Scientific Institute of Journalism
  • Educational and Scientific Institute of Law
  • Educational and Scientific Institute of Public Administration and Civil Service
  • Educational and Scientific Center “Institute of Biology and Medicine”
  • Faculty of Economics
  • Faculty of Psychology
  • Faculty of Information Technologies
  • Faculty of Philosophy
  • Faculty of Mechanics and Mathematics 

The participation of KNU students in this program was made possible thanks to KNU’s partnership with the University of Edinburgh.

The uniqueness of NICE lies in the combination of innovative teaching methods and theoretical knowledge focused on project work of teams. Student teams were assisted by facilitators – representatives of universities selected on the basis of a competition. Facilitators supported students in their research, observed group activities, motivated participants and helped them work on the project.

Four facilitators from KNU participated in the program, namely:

  • Marta Konovalova (Candidate of Political Science, Associate Professor of the Department of International Organizations and Diplomatic Service of the Educational and Scientific Institute of International Relations)
  • Dmytro Berezovskyi (student of the Faculty of Psychology)
  • Milena Beltska (student of the Faculty of Sociology)
  • Diana Yarova (student of the Educational and Scientific Institute of Law)

The NICE program consisted of two parts: online modules and a summer school.

Online Modules

The first part, which lasted from March 15 to June 30, 2023, was held in the format of online modules. More than 60 students applied for participation in the program. 30 students were selected by the selection committee, which consisted of professors of the Educational and Scientific Institute of International Relations, the Educational and Scientific Institute of Philology, the Faculty of Computer Sciences and Cybernetics, and the Faculty of Economics.

The program participants, working in close synergy with students from the University of Edinburgh, the University of Amsterdam, the University of Padua, as well as the University College Dublin, implemented team-based innovative business ideas, applying a cross-cultural approach to the development of entrepreneurship and solving the goals of sustainable development facing modern society.

Summer School

The second part involved participation in a summer school at the University of Padua from July 2 to 9, 2023. 15 of the most active and successful participants of the virtual part were selected for the summer school, who represented the University worthily among other leading universities in Europe.

The rich program of the summer school combined the topics of intercultural cooperation and social entrepreneurship in order to solve the problems of sustainable development in communities. Students participated in interactive classes, trainings on the development of entrepreneurial competence skills in international groups, developed their own project and successfully presented it. Participants gained valuable experience in intercultural communication and improved their social skills.

On the part of KNU, the project was coordinated by:

  • Roman Petyur
  • Nadiia Serohina
  • Olena Kurchenko
  • Liudmyla Zagoruiko
  • Diana Yarova