Alexander Vindman

The Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia (WCEE) at the University of Michigan International Institute is pleased to announce the WCEE Distinguished Lecture, “The War in Ukraine, One Year In,” at Rackham Auditorium on Monday, February 20 at 5:00 PM.

The event will examine and acknowledge what has transpired since the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, which began on February 24, 2022. The evening includes a conversation with Ukrainian-born retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman, former Director for European Affairs for the United States National Security Council. During a discussion moderated by Geneviève Zubrzycki, professor of sociology and WCEE Director, and John Ciorciari, professor of public policy and director of the Weiser Diplomacy Center, we will examine the current state of the war and its impacts on the Ukrainian people; the implications for global security; and prospects for peace and rebuilding.

In addition, local members of the Ukrainian Bandurist Chorus of North America will celebrate Ukrainian culture and traditions with a special musical performance. Artistic Director and Conductor Oleh Mahlay selected pieces meant to convey the Ukrainian experience through the current lens of life under Russian attack. The event will conclude with a student-led procession from Rackham to the Diag for a candlelight vigil in honor of Ukraine. Alexander Gedeon (Computer Science MSE ’22) and Carson Landry (Performance MMus student) will play patriotic Ukrainian music on the carillon at Burton Memorial Tower during the procession to the vigil. Tickets are required for this free event and can be ordered from the Michigan Union Ticket Office.

“February 24th marks a very sad anniversary,” said Professor Zubrzycki. “We felt it was important to acknowledge the suffering of the Ukrainian people, as well as to have an expert discussion of what is at stake both for Ukraine and the world in the short- and mid-term. We are thrilled that U-M students, faculty, and staff as well as the greater Detroit area community will be able to partake in this unique and important event.”

Alexander Vindman has served as the Director for Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, and Russia on the White House’s National Security Council; as the Political-Military Affairs Officer for Russia for the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and as an attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. He recently completed his doctoral studies at Johns Hopkins and is a senior fellow at the School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) Foreign Policy Institute. His memoir, Here, Right Matters: An American Story, is a New York Times bestseller.

Along with WCEE, generous support for this event comes from the Wallace House Center for Journalists; Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies; Weiser Diplomacy Center; Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures; and Ukrainian Club at U-M.

WCEE Distinguished Lecture
The War in Ukraine, One Year In
Monday, February 20, 5:00 PM
Rackham Auditorium, 915 E. Washington

Rachel Brichta |

The Weiser Center for Europe and Eurasia (WCEE) supports faculty and student research, teaching, collaboration, and public engagement in studying the institutions, cultures, and histories of these regions. WCEE is comprised of the Center for European Studies (CES); Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies (CREES); and Copernicus Center for Polish Studies (CCPS); and works in association with the Weiser Center for Emerging Democracies (WCED) at the University of Michigan International Institute. For more information, visit