A rally against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is happening now at Penn State’s University Park Campus.
The rally just started minutes ago. In the lead up to this rally there’s been all around support for Ukraine from Penn State and the community.
The Ukrainian Society has planned this rally since before Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops into the country.
That was a week ago. In the past seven days the relentless grit of the Ukrainians has inspired and unified the West against Putin and the war.
This has spurred protests all across the world. Even here at Penn State.
The University even lit up the Bryce Jordan Center in Blue and Gold for Ukraine.
Maria Smerkea, whose family is from the Ukraine, spoke with me before the invasion and expressed her concerns and those still in the country.
She spoke with me again, describing what it feels like now that Russian has come across the border.
“Many of us, because of the events that transpired, have been extremely stressed You know, we haven’t been sleeping, we’ve been unable to focus on school, on work, and other obligations.”
“And us coming together and having a rally has given us a at least a sense of purpose that we are helping, in some way, because we’re restricted geographically.”
“We’re not in Ukraine, we can’t take up arms and fight. But right now, what we can do is, we can come together and try to raise money for Ukrainian organizations, helping those affected by the war.”