With millions of families displaced, hundreds of schools damaged or destroyed, and infrastructure under constant threat, the education of Ukrainian students is at risk. That’s why schools and universities have turned to Amazon Web Services (AWS) to help rapidly scale distance learning and take other critical steps to ensure that students, educators, and researchers can continue their work uninterrupted, regardless of physical location.
Before the Russian invasion, Ukrainian educational institutions’ efforts to implement distance learning were already underway as a result of COVID-19. The Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, along with Ukrainian Institute for Educational Development and the Ministry of Digital Transformation, launched a COVID-19 response platform in December 2021 for distance and blended learning. Powered by the Open edX platform with the support of AWS Cloud credits, the new All-Ukrainian Online School provides students in grades 5–11 with a variety of remote learning resources.
To provide continuity of education to students affected by the war, the Dzherelo Distance School offers free virtual study programs from Grades 1–11 with the support of AWS. Likewise, the Optima School’s team of 200 education professionals, in coordination with Ukraine educational authorities, are committed to providing a K–12 education to children affected by the Russian invasion. With more than 100,000 students online, Optima is Ukraine’s first and largest distance learning school. AWS actively supports Optima’s efforts by providing cloud computing credits and technical support.
Since the start of the war in Ukraine, AWS Partner EPAM has been working with 22 universities to migrate critical resources from on-premises servers to AWS Cloud. This ensures that, even in the event of power disruption or damage to campus facilities, students can continue their studies remotely. With the support of AWS-provided disaster response credits, EPAM helps researchers from the Kyiv School of Economics and other institutions maintain operational continuity and data security during the war.
AWS is also working with two Polish universities—Warsaw School of Computer Science and WSB University in Dabrowa Gornicza—to make AWS Academy Cloud Foundations training available to Ukrainian refugees free of charge. This three-month course provides a detailed overview of cloud concepts to equip refugees with valuable new skills that are much in demand by employers.
As educational institutions address one set of challenges, displaced refugee students face other challenges entirely, as they adapt to their new homes. According to UN Refugee Agency UNCR, Poland is home to more than 3 million Ukrainian refugees. AWS is proud to support the work of You Have a Friend in Me, a web platform created by two Polish teens to connect young Ukrainian refugees with Polish high school and university students. You Have a Friend in Me helps displaced students find peers and mentors who can provide a friendly ear or helpful hand in navigating the educational system in their new, unfamiliar environment.
Students and adults looking to build their knowledge of cloud computing now have more ways to access hundreds of hours of free content. AWS offers AWS Educate, a free online self-paced learning program, available in Ukrainian and 11 other languages. Anyone with an internet connection can access a large library of self-paced training and resources for new-to-cloud learners. AWS Educate provides an opportunity to learn and practice cloud skills, and it helps learners connect with potential employers looking for cloud talent and posting job openings on AWS Educate. The AWS Educate job board currently lists more than 30,000 job opportunities globally at AWS, AWS customer organizations, and AWS Partners.