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A new group of students is starting to study Czech language at the University of Latvia

The Center of Bohemian and Polish Studies of the University of Latvia continues in Czech language courses taught by assoc. Prof. Nadežda Kopoloveca. A large number of students applied in the spring semester of 2021, and the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Riga wishes them a lot of learning success and is waiting for a personal meeting when the pandemic situation permits.

At the Faculty of Humanities of the University of Latvia (UL) the spring semester begins and along  with it, a new group of students also starts studying Czech language in distance learning conditions. This year, a large number of students applied to learn Czech - there are 24 of them! According to the students themselves, motivation to learn Czech lies in the potential to participate in an international Erasmus+ student exchange program, the opportunity to learn about Czech culture, and the alluring perspective of knowing a new foreign language. Students find it prestigious and beneficial to know as many foreign languages as possible for their future lives and careers in the EU and multicultural world.

Czech has been taught at the University of Latvia within the Russian Philology program as a secondary Slavic linguistics since 1998. Every other year in the spring semester, students choose to study Czech for the next two years. The total number of academic hours of the course is 224, which, taking into account the additional independent preparation, in two years allow students to reach B1 level in accordance with the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

And why study Czech language in Latvia? We asked Jana Hynková, the Ambassador of the Czech Republic. "I once learned a 'small language' at Charles University in Prague (when I have the opportunity to meet students in person, I will reveal which one it was). This has given me the opportunity to study diplomacy in a country where the language is spoken, which granted me to develop my career and expand my horizons. I believe that the Czech language can be a similar opportunity for students in Latvia. According to the LNG Index, Czechia is the 8th most successful country in the world in 2020. It supports the development of science, research and innovation and high-quality university education. The leading Czech companies operate in Latvia. Everyone knows Skoda Auto. And did you know that many trams and most trolleybuses in Riga come from a Czech company? Did you know that you can buy the Czech highest quality TON furniture here? In addition to economic co-operation, there is a remarkable academic and cultural co-operation, Czech soldiers work within the framework of an NATO Enhanced Forward presence in Latvia, amazing people work in the association "Latvia-Czechia", etc. There are many opportunities to use the Czech language, so I wish all UL students a lot of academic success, and I hope to meet them when the situation allows!”