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The deadline to sign up for East Central University’s annual trip to Russia and Ukraine is March 10 [SATURDAY]. This year’s tour, from May 15 to June 3, adds a visit to Yalta in southern Ukraine and possibly Prague in the Czech Republic.

The trip, which will offer six hours of 4000-level, transferable academic credit, will return to Kiev, Ukraine, and Moscow, Russia, led by Dr. Mara Sukholutskaya, ECU professor of English and languages.

“This summer you could be experiencing Russian and Ukrainian culture and history as we visit two East Slavic countries and their major cities,” she said.

The first stop is in Kiev, the 1,500-year-old capital of Ukraine, known as the “Mother of All Russian Cities.”  Russia’s and Ukraine’s historic past can be seen through visits to churches, the catacombs of Lavra, the oldest and holiest Russian monastery, and the elaborate splendor of St. Sophia’s Cathedral, ornate with 11th century frescoes and mosaics.

The tour will also include museums, art galleries, concerts, a river cruise and ballet performances. 

“You will also be able to visit Yalta, the site of the historic 1945 Yalta Conference,” Sukholutskaya said. “Yalta is in Crimea at the Black Sea in southern Ukraine. It is considered a pearl among Black Sea resorts.”

Participants also will see the home of the Russian navy in Sevastopol in Crimea.

An overnight train ride to Moscow will add to the excitement, she said.

In Moscow, the capital of Russia, tour participants will see Kremlin treasures, churches and parks, walk the Red Square and admire the unique beauty of St. Basil’s Cathedral.

Sukholutskaya said the tour might end in Prague, the ancient capital of the Czech Republic in the heart of Europe.

The cost of the trip, including airfare, train fare, lodging accommodations, all meals, a river cruise and all trips and cultural activities, is about $3,100. ECU tuition and fees and the cost of visa processing are not included in the cost.

For more information, contact Sukholutskaya at 580-559-5293 or

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