On November 15, 2017, the Polish Ambassador to the United States Piotr Wilczek, on the invitation of Lee Feinstein, Dean of Indiana University’s School of Global and International Studies, made remarks on behalf of the Polish nation on the occasion of maestro Krzysztof Penderecki’s visit to Indiana University, and spoke with a small group of SGIS Direct-Admit students. The corresponding event, a Symposium and Conversation with Krzysztof Penderecki, allowed guests to hear about the life and path of Krzysztof Penderecki from the maestro himself. Wilczek noted the "unique day" that this was, marked by the conferring of an honorary doctorate to the man he deemed to be “Poland’s finest composer and virtuoso.”
After the initial event, Dean Feinstein and Ambassador Wilczek met with SGIS Direct-Admit students, where Ambassador Wilczek briefly introduced himself, explaining his path from academia to public service in arguably the Polish Republic’s most important diplomatic office, the Polish Ambassador to the United States. Ambassador Wilczek has had a long academic career, serving as an assistant and then associate professor at the University of Silesia from 1986 – 2008, and the Dean of the Faculty of Languages from 2002 – 2008. He moved in 2008 to the Faculty of “Artes Liberales” at the University of Warsaw as the Head of the Collegium Artes Liberales (the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences) and of the Centre for the Study of the Reformation and Intellectual Culture in Early Modern Europe. In addition to his work in Poland, he has studied in England and the United States, and was a visiting professor at Rice University from 1998 – 2001. After discussing his interests and background in academia, the ambassador briefly addressed the Three Seas Initiative, an agreement between twelve Central and Eastern European states, including Poland, that border on the Black, Baltic, and Adriatic Seas.. He also commented on Poland’s challenging position as it considers competing offers of capital investments and the complexities arising therefrom, as well as Poland’s relationship with Germany, its principal trading partner.
Austin Wilson is a first-year MA student in REEI.