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Leadership Seminar 2010

Providnytskyj Seminar 2010 CYM Youth Leadership Seminar
Hosted at the
US-Ukraine Foundation
in Washington D.C.
By Lida Mykytyn-Voronka

The imposing historic Georgetown mansion, which is home to the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington, D.C., set the tone for the annual Youth Leadership Seminar, organized by the Ukrainian American Youth Association (CYM), as the participants began their two-day intensive training meeting visiting the Embassy. A few select high school juniors and seniors, from across the United States, who have proven their leadership potential and dedication within the ranks of CYM, were invited to participate in this scholarship-based seminar. These participants were selected based on their nomination and support by their local CYM branch, a very competitive screening process, and approval by the organizing committee.

The seminar, which was held at the offices of the US-Ukraine Foundation, between March 26-28, 2010, focused on leadership, marketing and public relations, project management, and motivation in non-profit organizations. Speakers included Nadia Komarnytsky McConnell, Ihor Naumenko, Bohdan Shevchik, Oleksa Breslawec, Nusia Kerda, Bohdan Hetmansky, Andrew Bihun of The Washington Group, Genya Kuzmowycz-Blahy, Marta Matseliukh, and Andriy Bihun, holowa KY CYM. These speakers and role models equipped the participants with theories, which would form the base the participants would then transform into practice, not only at the seminar, but back in their communities, upon their return. During the two-day seminar, participants were exposed to thought-provoking discussions, challenging teamwork exercises, lectures by prominent community figures and even a moonlight tour of the nations capital. The goal of the seminar was twofold: to equip the future leaders of CYM and the Ukrainian community with the understanding of true leadership, and to help them personally evolve and grow.

Providnytskyj Seminar 2010 Ukrainian Embassy visit and meeting with Cultural Attache, Victor Voloshyn

The itinerary of the seminar included a tour of the Ukrainian Embassy, which has a deep historic meaning to both the American government from the times of George Washington, and to the Ukrainian government currently. The participants had the unique opportunity to meet with a representative of the Ukrainian government, the Embassys Cultural Attache, Viktor Voloshyn. The participants realized with awe their rare privilege of being present in such a special setting.

Providnytskyj Seminar 2010 Seminar Participants in front of Ukrainian Embassy

The activities did not end with the theoretical presentations and discussions on Saturday. After a long day of intense work, the group was rewarded to a several hour tour of historic Washington D.C. They were enchanted with visiting many famous architectural and historic landmarks under the glare of moonlight. Despite their exhaustion from the days intensity, the participants were mesmerized by the beauty and imposing history of the city, which hosted the seminar.

Providnytskyj Seminar 2010 Nadia Komarnytsky McConnell with seminar participants at the US-Ukraine Foundation

Sunday proved to be as enriching as the previous day. The entire group traveled to Washingtons Ukrainian Catholic National Shrine of the Holy Family, to attend morning Liturgy. Post this excursion, the group was back at the US-Ukraine Foundation, hungry for more knowledge. The Sunday session would focus on extending and applying the principals of leadership and organization learned on the current and previous days. The participants would be charged with organizing a project from concept building through execution. This hands-on workshop, crafted by Lida Mykytyn-Voronka, Genya Kuzmowycz-Blahy and Andriy Bihun, would crystallize the individual facets of concept building, target marketing, public relations, organizing logistic, budgeting and financing, program development, project management, etc. The participants would have to work together, under the pressure of time, to formulate and present their project a new camp.

Providnytskyj Seminar 2010 Andriy Bihun, holowa KY CYM, working with seminar participants

Upon completion of an intensive two day program, several themes emerged from the seminar. They understood the need to change and evolve to become more efficient, productive and alluring, without compromising vision, ideals and missions of organizations. Enthusiasm and motivation were evident throughout the entire seminar. Talent, hope, and promise for the future emanated from these participants.

What a setting for a leadership seminar for the todays Ukrainian youth and the leaders of the Ukrainian community tomorrow the offices of a progressive Ukrainian foundation, the building that houses the leaders of the Ukrainian government in the United States, and the city of Washington, the core of leadership in the United States. The participants of CYMs Youth Leadership Seminar realized the meaning of this setting and left empowered to make a difference in their community and take on the challenge of leading Ukrainian organizations into the future.

CYM extends its sincerest appreciation to the U.S-Ukraine Foundation and to the Ukrainian Embassy for their warmth and hospitality, which was instrumental in making the leadership seminar so successful and memorable.

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