Oliver Wolyniec

Oliver Wolyniec's picture

Oliver Wolyniec is a current M.A. student in the European and Russian Studies program at Yale. He grew up in Minnesota and earned his B.A. in international relations and Russian from Carleton College in 2019. In his junior year, Oliver spent the spring term at Moscow State University on a study abroad program. After graduation, he spent several months studying Russian in Nizhny Novgorod through the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) program before joining the Peace Corps in Montenegro as an English language teacher. His time in the Balkans was cut short by the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March 2020.

Oliver began work at Eurasia Foundation (EF) in Washington, DC in February 2021 and assisted with the organization’s U.S.-Russia Social Expertise Exchange (SEE) program, connecting civil society and media actors through joint projects in both countries. He also helped oversee EF’s Young Professionals Network (YPN), which brings together yearly cohorts of early-career professionals and graduate students in the DC area focusing on Russia, East Europe, and/or Eurasia for monthly events with prominent experts in the field and networking opportunities. He spent the summer of 2023 in Almaty, Kazakhstan diving back into Russian language study.

At Yale, Oliver is focusing on the role of civil society in conflict prevention and peacebuilding efforts in Russia, East Europe, and Eurasia. He is especially interested in the ongoing war in Ukraine, the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, and resurgent ethnic nationalism in the Balkans.

1st Year, European & Russian Studies
Fields of Interest: 
Geographic Focus: Russia, East Europe, Balkans, Eurasia Thematic Focus: Conflict Prevention, Peacebuilding, Civil Society, International Development