Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, one of the most brilliant phenomena of the Ukrainian culture and the Ukrainian spirit.
Its history begins at Kyiv Brotherhood School. On October 15, 1615, the noble woman Hlashka Hulevichevna presented her land in Podil in Kyiv. to a monastery, hospital and school for children of "all positions and ranks". Iov Boretsky, a well-known Ukrainian enlightener, became its first rector.
The guardian of the school was Kyiv Brotherhood which supported it both financially and intellectually: almost all Kyiv scientists of that time were its members. Zaporizhian Cossacks led by hetman Petro Sahaidachny joined the Brotherhood with the whole army.
Sometime later the school united with the Lavra School of metropolitan Petro Mohyla: it was declared a higher educational establishment and was named Kyiv-Mohyla, in honour of its patron Petro Mohyla, the most educated man of that era.
Hetman Ivan Mazepa, protector of art and education in Ukraine, did much for the development, of the Academy.
Until 1661 the Academy was the only institute of higher education of Eastern Europe. Kyiv-Mohyla Academy provided a very wide education. The Church Slavonic, Greek, Latin, Polish, French and German languages were studied in the Academy. The curricula comprised poetics, literature, philosophy, geography, mathematics, physics, and from the end of the century also economics and history. Graduates of the Academy became writers, publishers, translators, prominent diplomats and men of the church.
Talented statesmen — hetmans Samoilovich, Ivan Mazepa, Pylyp Orlyk were its graduates. The founder of the Russian Academy, Mykhailo Lomono-sov, the first professor of medicine of Russia Kostyantyn Schepin, Honorary member of twelve foreign academies Danylo Tuptalo, a prominent portrait painter H. Levytsky and architect Hry-horovych-Barsky studied at the Academy at different times.
In 1817, the Academy was closed by a tsar's decree. It is impossible to estimate the losses to Ukraine caused by this action. The library, the picture-gallery together with the most valuable archives disappeared.
Kyiv-Mohyla Academy only resumed its work in 1991, already as the independent and international University "Kyiv-Mohyla Academy". Three faculties work now in the University: the humanities, social and natural sciences.
The International Sociological Center is being created together with the American-Ukrainian Ecological Center, the French-Ukrainian Laboratory of Humanitarian Studies, the Information-Computing Center, scientific and educational laboratories. The scientific library is being replenished.
An art gallery, drama school, and chorus are opened in the Academy. Students have organized the Students Brotherhood and yacht club.
A very strong teaching staff is gathered in the Academy. Leading scientists from different countries of the world deliver lectures in the University.
UKMA is so far the only higher institute of learning in Ukraine, where almost half the courses have been chosen. An international meeting of UNESCO experts was held in May 1993 in the Academy. Consequently UKMA was granted international university status.