Background

Since 1991, the Center for Slavic, Eurasian, and East European Studies (CSEEES) has promoted understanding of and engagement with East European and Eurasian countries. It has worked to enhance capacity to meet strategic U.S. needs through a variety of projects and activities: teacher training, public outreach, course development, instruction in area and language studies, conferences and workshops, and faculty and student exchanges. The Center draws upon a broad base of support with 30 core faculty members and nearly 30 associated faculty members who regularly teach courses and engage in research focused on Eastern Europe, Russia, or Eurasia. From 1991 to 2014, in consortium with Duke University’s Center for Slavic, Eurasian, and East European Studies, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s CSEEES was recognized by the International Education Programs Service office of the U.S. Department of Education as one of sixteen National Resource Centers (NRC) in Slavic, Eurasian, and East European Studies.

The Center serves as a resource for faculty, graduate, and undergraduate students in diverse disciplines and promotes interdisciplinary knowledge. In addition to directly supporting teaching, research, and public outreach activities, the Center is home to the Russian, Eurasian and East European Concentration in Global Studies MA Program. The CSEEES regularly contributes to international understanding and scholarship by hosting distinguished scholars and administrators, and meeting with foreign delegations from our region of the world.

Student Support And Instruction

The newly created Russian, Eurasian and East European Concentration in Global Studies MA Program receives vital support from CSEEES activities. The MA degree stresses multi- and inter-disciplinary approaches to the study of Eastern Europe, Russia, and Eurasia in an era of globalization and internationalization. Students work closely with the Director, Associate Director, and affiliated faculty members of the Center in constructing their programs. The MA degree is unique within the University, combining learning of Slavic or East European languages (Russian, Czech, Hungarian, Polish, Serbian-Croatian) with a substantial number of courses that focus upon the Russian, Eurasian, and East European geo-cultural area. Graduates find employment in the U.S. military and government, national and international nongovernmental organizations, and the private sector, or choose to continue their education.

The Center works closely with the Department of History, the Department of Political Science, the Curriculum in Global Studies, the Carolina Institute of the Environment, and the Curriculum in Peace, War and Defense, as well as other campus departments and programs to provide innovative learning experiences. The CSEEES Director leads a summer Burch Field Research Semi­nar program in Austria, Croatia, and Bosnia entitled, “International Organizations and the Balkans: Focus on the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.” In conjunction with the UNC Study Abroad Of­fice, the CSEEES helped to develop study abroad opportunities such as the Jerome College of Prague, the UNC Summer in Moscow at the Russian State University of the Humanities (RGGU), and the Institute for the Environment Summer Field Program in Siberia. Other study abroad programs are available in Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Russia.

Research Support

The CSEEES stimulates study and research on Russia, Eurasia, and Eastern Europe by funding travel, providing course development grants, and underwriting small-scale projects for UNC faculty. For example, the Center co-sponsors the “Gender, War, and Culture” workshop series, “Russia and its Empires, East and West” seminars and Czech Studies workshop.

The CSEEES also supports interdisciplinary working groups on important topics such as Collective Violence and Conflict Resolution (CVCR). An interdisciplinary team from the CVCR working group was recently awarded a National Science Foundation grant for the study of political violence. CSEEES is working with the UNC Office of Research Development to develop a comprehensive, strategic research plan, which will include innovative working groups.

The Center also enables research by providing resources to the Davis Library for materials acquisition. The library’s Slavic and East European Collection is one of the best in the nation, for it has over 800,000 print volumes. The André Savine collection was acquired in 2002 and contains unique materials on Russian émigré. The collection provides a unique opportunity for scholarship on revolutionary and post­-revolutionary émigré culture and history, and documents from the Trans-Caspian Provisional Government (1918-1919).

To support an active, collaborative, scholarly community, the Center organizes conferences, workshops, and seminars to which both foreign and domestic scholars, diplomats, civic activists, and political leaders are invited as speakers on a variety of Slavic, Eurasian, and East European topics.

Community Support

Community outreach activities and teacher training are integral to the CSEEES mission. The Center collaborated with the Ukrainian Association of North Carolina to host “The Ukrainian Famine-Genocide: Reflections After 75 Years” Conference at the UNC FedEx Global Education Center. CSEEES collaborates with World View and North Carolina in the World to provide training and resources to North Carolina K-12 and community college instructors seeking to internationalize classrooms. As part of the Kyrgyz Connect project, CSEEES-affiliated visiting scholars from Kyrgyzstan met with students from Clayton Middle School’s Global Connection class and helped link classrooms in North Carolina and Kyrgyzstan. In addition, the Center funds teacher scholarships for UNC’s Program in the Humanities and Human Values seminars. CSEEES staff and affiliated faculty regularly provide timely and valuable information to local media outlets. We sponsor speakers, and musical and theatrical programming for the broader community. More than 700 individuals subscribe to Connections, our Center’s quarterly publication, and over 550 individuals receive announcements on our Center’s events listserv.

Diversity Statement

The MA Program understands that diversity is a critical element of Carolina’s pursuit of academic excellence, and is committed to creating a diverse, inclusive community.

We strive to enhance U.S. national security and global competitiveness by promoting international service and awareness among a broader, more representative cross-section of the American citizenry.

The Office of Diversity and Multicultural Affairs (DMA)