LISS Program Bridges Cultures, Inspires Foreign Students

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On Friday, June 17, American and Canadian students of Lithuanian heritage met for the first time in Lithuania as participants of the LISS Program. Taking place from June 17 to July 30, the summer internship program will allow students to take full advantage of not being tourists but locals living daily life. Through the aid of the LISS Program and its sponsor Vytautas Magnus University, students will gain valuable work experience which is applicable in their everyday activities and could prove vital to their future careers.

Aran Burke,

The long anticipated summer internship this year began with positive feelings and optimistic appraisals. A group of around fifty people gathered together before some of them boarded a bus and arrived in the VMU dorm on Vytauto Prospektas in Kaunas. The interns all expressed admiration for their upcoming work and the atmosphere was candid.

LISS director Rasa Ardys-Juska routinely conveys optimism about the program and its capacity to grant students opportunities to participate in cultural, academic and political events and the prestige and notoriety associated with working abroad. “It’s a great opportunity to make international connections with professions in your future field”, says Rasa. She continued by stressing the resume building potential through the program: „This is an invaluable experience, to live in Lithuania and enrich your resume with international work”.

LISS Program was started as an opportunity for Americans and Canadians with Lithuanian heritage or interest to learn more about Lithuania. The students spend their summer interning in a position that interests them or is affiliated with their field of study, or by volunteering.  They embellish their Lithuanian language, vocabulary and communication skills, and experience life in Lithuania while making new friends and connections that last a lifetime.

Aside from Vytautas Magnus University itself, there are many other available work options for participants in the program: interns work in a variety of places such as hospitals, senior centers, orphanages, children’s homes, homeless shelters, banks, conservatories, etc.  Jackie Cerskus, a LISS student who works at the Kaunas Clinic, said, “I really enjoy the work.  I get to do things that I would never be able to do in Canada, and I am learning a lot”. She also added that getting in touch with her relatives in Lithuania has been a great experience for her. Aran Burke, another LISS intern, began writing a blog about his experience working and the general opportunities the program offers. The blog can be read at

The program is sponsored by Vytautas Magnus University, Lithuanian-American Community Inc, Lithuanian Canadian Community, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania and Lithuanian Foundation Inc. Upon completion of the program, students complete a course project to receive five university credits from VMU. Anyone seeking further information about the LISS Program or what it has to offer can visit its website at


Milda Marcis

How many college students are accepted into the program?

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