A significant prerequisite for social responsibility is undoubtedly not only the desire to contribute to the development of society and the country but also a sincere willingness to work for the benefit of others and do good deeds, especially during the war.
The issue of social responsibility of universities, actively researched and discussed by scholars since the late 20th century, has gained particular relevance nowadays. Universities, in particular, now have to strengthen scientific research in order to enhance the country's defense capabilities, to provide psychological support and integration for veterans, to establish memory policy, and to foster not only competent professionals but also nationally conscious citizens.
It is important to emphasize that practices of social responsibility became widespread in Ukrainian universities long before this discourse entered the broader research field. Referring to the experience of the classical Karazin University, which opened its doors to students in January 1805, we can clearly see that it was the social responsibility of this higher education institution that significantly and qualitatively changed the life of Kharkiv at that time.The university became a center for progressive European ideas. It laid the foundations for scientific research aimed at the development of the city and its transformation into a powerful intellectual center of the region.
In fact, in the 19th century, the university effectively played a city-forming role. At the beginning of the century, Kharkiv was a small town with a population of around 10,000 people. However, with foreign scholars coming to teach at the university, the city gradually formed a powerful intellectual environment. The development of the city was also promoted by students who came from different regions specifically to Kharkiv, making their own contribution to its development. Medicine began to actively develop during this period.
Since the beginning of the full-scale war, the social responsibility of universities significantly increases. It is extremely gratifying to realize that leading Ukrainian universities not only embrace this challenge but also respond to it with high efficiency and professionalism.
Scientists at Karazin University are developing a range of directions aimed at addressing the needs of the country and the military during the wartime. This includes research in the fields of health and ecology, national energy security, alternative energy, physics of metamaterials, and more.
Karazin University has established the Center for Veteran Development, which organizes and conducts events related to vocational guidance and individual professional development for servicemen, veterans, and their families. In December 2023, a charitable evening was held at Karazin University with the goal of raising funds to support the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
The university pays special attention to individuals with special needs. Facilities, such as ramps, have been created to ensure unimpeded access to all educational buildings for these individuals.
A successful future is possible only through active involvement of the youth in the processes of scientific, educational, and cultural development. And, of course, we understand that the mission of universities today is to promote opportunities for the development of youth in Ukraine.
Karazin University collaborates not only with students but also with schoolchildren. In particular, an offline project called "Karazin Weekends Legacy" has been initiated for them, allowing every schoolchild to experience being a Karazin University student. Most of the activities are focused on developing practical skills, creative, and critical thinking.
Classical Karazin University has always been and remains socially responsible. Recognizing the needs and current challenges, the university corporation seeks to actively develop and support its city and country. Currently, we are working towards the unity and development of Ukraine, towards our common Victory. At the same time, we remember the guidance of the eminent Ukrainian, honorary doctor of Karazin University, Mykhailo Hrushevsky: "We should not promote things that divide and separate individual parts of Ukrainian land but we should seek for things that unite and bring them together, and this we must strengthen and develop... To unite, to concentrate, not to divide, not to scatter – this should be our slogan in everything."
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