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Vilnius native Olga Bliumenzon joined the VYI staff in 2003 as special projects manager. Shortly afterward, she completed her B.A. in English Philology at Vilnius University. Her thesis, in the field of semantics, was titled "On the Epistemic Stance Adverbials of Certainty in a Cross-Linguistic Perspective." Now, after a year devoted solely to VYI projects, she has begun studies toward an M.A. in international communications. Among her courses are ones in public and international relations, world communications, and social research, all areas in which her native Russian along with equally fluent Lithuanian and near-native English will stand her in good stead—as they have in her work at the VYI.
As projects manager, Olga initiates contacts with diverse foundations, introducing the VYI and describing the activities for which we seek financial support. Once interest is determined, she submits applications, writes detailed project descriptions, and formulates our basic needs. Currently focused on expanding our library, she has garnered book contributions from Aaron Lansky's Yiddish Book Center (U.S.A.) and generous funding from a guest of the VYI—with whom she cemented both a friendship with the Institute and herself personally. With the aid of her VYI colleagues Olga, has also begun formulating plans for a "Yiddish Culture Week" in Vilnius.
As a result of Olga's communications with the local and international press and radio, the VYI was visited by a number of interviewers from Germany, Sweden, and elsewhere. This past year, too, she was also busy with administering the Institute's first Yiddish Educator Program and received high grades from the course's thirty international participants for her daily efforts in their behalf. Most recently, she has been assisting 2006 Yiddish Summer Program director Prof. Sidney Rosenfeld as program coordinator.
What with her university studies and her fulltime position at the VYI, Olga's days are packed to the brim. But she finds the challenges stimulating, the rewards gratifying, and invites visitors to Vilnius to stop by at her desk. She will gladly acquaint them with the Institute and its work and, in addition, do all she can to enhance their stay in her hometown.
However, my studies do not disturb me from my work as I have classes after the working hours, i. e. they start every day from 6:00 PM. Usually I come home, thus, only after 9:00 PM which makes my day very full and busy but it helps me stay alive, and develop myself in greater speed.
Basically, I was in touch with a number of foundations for receiving primary contacts, describing us, introducing the projects that we need the support for (which Richard later received the funds from). I am still busy trying to find various foundations that would be interested in supporting us.
Further on once I see that we have a possibility to receive support I I also trying to generate new ideas on projects, let's say the idea of having a "Yiddish culture week" project (who, what, were and how), of course not alone, but with the help of all my colleagues.
So basically I am the "Project manager" and the "Summer Course Coordinator",if we receive the grant for the Educator Course again, then I will also be the Yiddish Educator Course Coordinator.
|2005 VILNIUS YIDDISH INSTITUTE. Solution: Neosymmetria|