December 3, 2018
Spotlight on Alumni View Full Series
Mariya Berlinska enrolled in the History Department of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy and received a master’s degree in Judaica Studies. Berlinska founded the Center of Aerial Reconnaissance for training of unmanned aerial vehicles. There was a need for pilots of unmanned aerial vehicles, so she decided she had to become one. She started learning about drones, took a pilot training course, and since then, she worked with army battalions performing airborne reconnaissance.
Soon, Berlinska was ready to teach others, so she founded a school based at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, her alma mater, to provide soldiers with training in drone piloting.
Berlinska produced the documentary “Invisible Battalion” about women serving in the military in Donbas. The movie was featured on a national Ukrainian TV channel, and since its premier it has been screened in many countries. “I want to remind the world with this movie that we have an ongoing war,” Berlinska said at a screening in Toronto. Berlinska led the effort to point out the discrepancy between the actual specialization of women at the front and their official position. The film centers around the stories of six women focusing on various aspects of life during the war.
As the film was making an impact on viewers in various countries, Berlinska, along with her colleagues and the organization Razom in New York, conducted an online fundraising campaign for scholarships for veterans to study at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. The Academy opened its doors to veterans. There were many applicants for the scholarships, only four were chosen due to limited funding, and all four chose Master’s Program in Public Management and Administration. With more funding in the future, more veterans can be included in the program.