Editors note: These articles were originally published on Tuesday April 26, 2022 in the last print edition of the spring 2022. Due to a technological issue these were not published online at the time.”

Armed with signs, photo print-outs, a clipboard, and a desire to do more, a couple of graduate students took to Eastman Quad.

On Wednesday, April 20, students collected over 300 signatures for a petition headed to both N.Y. Senators asking them to do all they can to help bring an end to the Ukraine Conflict. The petition comes as the Russian Invasion in Ukraine entered its eighth week, having displaced over 11 million residents from their homes, according to the BBC.

Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24, and the conflict has dragged on to become one of the largest troop mobilizations in Europe since 1945. Over six million have already flead the nation according to the UN.

Organizers hope the petition will help pressure Senators Schumer and Gillibrand to do all in their power to help Ukraine and bring an end to the conflict while also spreading awareness to the campus community.

“My main goal is to make people aware, make people not indifferent, and also to have the courage to sign the petition and be politically active, because I believe every signature matters. If there are hundreds of us signing the letter to Gillibrand and Schumer, it is meaningful,” lead organizer and PhD candidate Anita Michas told CT

“I used to just donate money, I used to just send money but I feel that it’s just not enough, and I’m also running out of money to donate,” graduate student and organizer Agabek Kabdullin said. “I supported different Ukrainian initiatives, that wasn’t enough. What else can I do? And here I am doing this.”

The petition was widely received well by students walking through Eastman Quad.

“It’s really important that the University has some sort of presence in terms of showing that people on campus care about these issues, and I appreciate that Anita has been so great organizing this, that she has been reaching out to people with the authority to make a real difference as opposed to just preformative activism,” History Ph.D. student Justin Grossman said.

Many students were moved by images placed around the library doors showing scenes from war-torn Ukraine.

“The pictures are capturing something that we need to help stop and end. Some of them are really gruesome and really telling; it’s really sad,” first-year Cai Rogers told CT. “There are people who are walking by looking at these photos and obviously are helping and signing [the petition], that’s what you do you spread the message, you tell people, you inform.”

“The pictures are really heartbreaking for me, I saw some of those on social media but it’s pretty different to see them printed, it’s very sad,” junior Draco Xu said. 

Organizers plan to conduct another round of petitioning on April 27 before sending the petition to Congress. Organizers encouraged students who want to donate humanitarian aid here or directly to the Ukrainian military here.

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