VMU Will Celebrate Independence Restoration Day and the University’s Birthday

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On February 15, as part of the festivities marking the forthcoming Day of Restoration of Lithuanian Independence and the birthday of Vytautas Magnus University, the memory of a Lithuanian freedom fighter Jonas Pranas Aleksa will be immortalized, while the members of the VMU community will be honoured and given awards.

Indrė Sekevičienė, i.sekeviciene@vkt.vdu.lt
Martynas Gedvila, m.gedvila@vkt.vdu.lt

The celebration of the Day of Restoration of Lithuanian Independence and the 89th birthday of VMU will commence with the paying of respects to the historical memory and the people who have contributed enormously to Lithuania and the university.

At 2.30 p.m., the official unveiling of the stela created in remembrance of the Professor Jonas Pranas Aleksa will take place at the Faculty of Economics and Management (S. Daukanto g. 28, 4th floor lobby). It will immortalize the memory of Aleksa, who was a persistent upholder of Lithuanian citizenship traditions, the conceptual initiator of a university in Kaunas and a lecturer at VMU.

At 4 p.m. in the VMU Aula Magna (Gimnazijos g. 7), the Day of the Restoration of Lithuanian Independence and the birthday of the university will be commemorated in an official ceremony. The Music Academy, a newly established division of the university, will be introduced to the audience and meritorious members of the VMU community will be honoured.

"On a person’s birthday, we all say thanks, give presents. Thus, during the celebrations of university’s birthday, members of the VMU community will also be awarded", said the Rector of the university Zigmas Lydeka.

For the first time in the history of the re-established VMU, young scientists who have successfully defended their PhD theses in 2010 will be awarded doctoral insignia of VMU. "A young scientist, accepting the diploma of a Doctor of Science, should remember this day as an exceptional banner day in his career. The university has always enjoyed the scientific accomplishments of each of its members, hence we have decided to change the quite formal diploma awards’ ceremony in the beginning of a Senate meeting into a part of the birthday celebration – paying respects to the young scientist and his family in this way", the Rector explained what was behind the initiative of this beautiful tradition.

The most hard-working and active doctoral students and scientists will also receive tokens of encouragement. In the competition of the most active doctoral students and young scientists, the third and fourth year PhD students were evaluated separately, as well as the young scientists who have successfully defended dissertations. Separate competitions were also held in the areas of the Humanities, Biomedicine, Social and Physical Sciences. The commission of experts of the corresponding scientific areas assessed the applicants’ requests according to their scientific productions (articles and other publications) and other activities – participation in projects, conferences, student teaching, university management, etc.

"The competition of the doctoral students and the young scientists is one of the components of a system of evaluation and encouragement for the lecturers and the research fellows, implemented and constantly improved at the university. Lately more and more of financing of science and studies get to universities through competitions and projects. Keeping that in mind, as early as from their PhD studies, we try to make future teachers and researchers get used to competitions, help them learn to present their ideas and results of scientific activities attractively. We think that this will encourage young scientists to be more active participants in the processes at the university", claimed the VMU Vice Rector for Research Juozas Augutis.

At the celebrations of the Day of Restoration of Lithuanian Independence and the birthday of VMU,  meritorious employees will be honoured with VMU silver medals. Also given out will be the VMU honorary scholarships, as well as Independence Act signatory Jonas Smilgevičius’ scholarships. Memorial scholarships are given out to Bachelor’s and Master’s degree students for their outstanding achievements in studies or scientific, creative, public or sports activities representing the university. Honorary scholarships are awarded in an official ceremony once a year to no more than seven VMU students. This year, two VMU honorary scholarships will be presented.

 Students of the VMU Music Academy will present a musical programme, which will include melodies composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Giuseppe Verdi and Maurice Ravel.

The festivities at the VMU Aula Magna will be broadcasted live at the Bishop Pranciškus Būčys room (Gimnazijos g. 7–411)

You are most welcome to participate.

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