Participant of EHU elections: I did not vote for David Pollick
The EHU has finally elected a new rector. According to BelaPAN, it is an American, David Pollick, although officially the university administration has not announced the results. Other candidates for to the post in the final election were politician Aliaksandr Milinkevich and EHU lecturer Tatstsiana Shchyttsova. We'll try to figure out how an American became a part of the Belarusian university in Vilnius.
Election of the new rector
According to the Euroradio, David Pollick was elected at the general meeting of co-owners of the university. According to some sources, he was elected by three people, others say there were five. Still, one voice was not in favor of Pollick.
"The voting was equal, I voted against Pollick, describes her choice Alla Sakalova, a member of the general meeting of the co-owners. I had an opinion that our university should be headed by a man who has long worked for us, who knows our problems, knows languages, knows the Belarusian culture."
The students did not participate in the final vote, although they held one of their own. According to the results of student elections, the post of Rector was to be taken by Tatstsiana Shchyttsova. Still, the students were not invited to the general vote, despite their desire to be present.
"When we came to the committee meeting, we shared our opinions and the results of the student vote, describes the student's participation Maryia Slyaptsova, a member of the student group. We have adopted a resolution requesting a place in the electoral commission, but it was ignored."
Who wanted to run the EHU
There were six candidates for the position of the Rector at once: leader of the movement For Freedom Alyaksandr Milinkevich, historian Ales Krautsevich, philosopher Tatstsiana Shchyttsova, David Pollick, who is now the acting Rector, director of the office of the Institute of International Education (Moscow) Edward Roslof and Vice-rector for Development and Communication of the EHU, Darius Ūdris.
After three leaders from the list were asked to write an extended program for the university, the choice was between Alyaksandr Milinkevich, Tatstsiana Shchyttsova and David Pollick. The students conducted their elections already in December, and after that had a chance to get acquainted with the programs of the candidates.
One of the candidates, Alyaksandr Milinkevich, has already called for the re-election due to the opacity of the vote.
"Everyone is tired of these mysteries. Neither students nor teachers were represented at the vote. It is a public university, not a private one. We all want to make it work for Belarus."
What happens next to EHU
Currently, the administration remaines silent and promises to soon officially announce the name of the new Rector and show how he was chosen. The presumable new rector David Pollick previously headed several private colleges in the United States, he is a professor of philosophy. He was the acting President of the State University of New York (SUNY, Cortland office), served as president and CEO of the Chicago Institute of Art and the acting Rector of EHU. Now he is studying Russian, but does not speak Belarusian.
The Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has already expressed concern about the elections of the EHU Rector. It is unclear what will happen with the dismissed teachers, and that is Pavel Tserashkovich, Maxim Zhbankou, Volha Shparaga. In the midst of a conflict between the administration and the EHU Senate, among those who lost their jobs also were trade union chairman Alyaksei Kryvalap and his deputy Kanstantsin Tkachou.
The main task for the new Rector is to keep the EHU a Belarusian university. After all, the new Constitution, adopted last year, declares that "the EHU is the Lithuanian non-state institution of higher education."