.
This past April 19th marked the 5th annual symposium held by the Carmel Institute of Russian Culture and History. Under the theme of “Partners in Orbit,” over 600 students and scholars from 32 universities around the world gathered at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum to celebrate the partnership between Russia, the United States, and the International Space Station. The evening celebration kicked off with a ceremony honoring the first man in space, soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. In commemoration of the 55th anniversary of his first flight into space in 1961, the National Air and Space Museum was presented a bronze statue of the great soviet cosmonaut by the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the US, Sergey Kislyak. Thanks to the joint effort between the Embassy of the Russian Federation, the Russian Culture Center, and the International Charitable Fund “Dialogue of Cultures – United World,” US-Russian cooperation was strengthened and celebrated through the reception of the iconic bronze statue. Deputy Director, General Roscosmos, Sergei V. Saveliev remarked, “If we look into the past of humankind, we will see that there have been several universal themes going throughout human history.  One of them is this constant desire to go to the frontier of the known world, to study it, and then to go forward to the unknown.  Of course, human space flights have seen some breakthroughs and setbacks, some rivalry and some friendship, but what was universal is the idea of cooperation, which was the driving factor of many endeavors.” The highlight of the evening arrived with the “Partners in Orbit” symposium. Several key figures in the Russian and US space programs presented at the event, including Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United States Sergey Kislyak, NASA Administrator Charles F. Bolden, Deputy Director of General Roscosmos Sergei V. Saveliev, former US Ambassador to Russia John Beyrle, Deputy Director of the Central Engineering Research Institute Sergey Krikalev, and Director of the Carmel Institute Dr. Anton Fedyashin. Susan E. Carmel closed the evening with a specific focus on the students and scholars in the audience when she said, "I hope that you will recall this evening with a feeling of unlimited potential for the future, as it relates to space as well as to future cooperation between nations. Nations are made up of land, industry, and many things but most importantly, nations are people, and it is mutual respect, understanding and cooperation between people that makes this world a better and more peaceful place." IMG_5197 The symposium highlighted both US and Russian achievements in space, with special emphasis being placed on the International Space Station and its role in uniting the two countries. As Ambassador Sergey Kislyak puts it, “The kind of cooperation that we have on the International Space Station is exactly the model we need to strive for in building serious and long-term positive relations between our two countries. One of the interesting features of the ISS project is that both Russia and the United States have been able to isolate it from the crises and disagreements that we had on a number of issues that do exist between our two countries. Instead, we chose our ability to be wise and look into the future. For me, the lessons from the cooperation in the Space Station were just about that - our mutual ability to finally be wise.” With tensions between the US and Russia ever increasing, the partnership in space between the two countries provides a potential roadmap to alleviating tension on the ground and promoting cooperation through ideas and exploration. The Carmel Institute of Russian Culture and History, host to the “Partners in Orbit” symposium, also promotes cooperation through exchange programs, educational courses, and the arts. Thanks to institutions like the International Space Station and the Carmel Institute, Russia and the US are able to build a friendship in both outer space and in the classroom. [caption id="attachment_7019" align="alignnone" width="300"]Attendees at the "Partners in Orbit" Symposium Attendees at the "Partners in Orbit" Symposium[/caption] The evening ended on a cosmic high note, with delectable space food, colorful light up rocket displays, and the opportunity to explore the vast museum after hours. With such a display of friendship even in tumultuous times, there still remains hope for a future where peaceful coexistence is present both on the ground as well as among the stars. Photo credit: ImageLink photo.com  

About
Winona Roylance
:
Winona Roylance is Diplomatic Courier's Managing Editor and Special Series Editor.
The views presented in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the views of any other organization.

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“Partners in Orbit” Symposium Honors US-Russia Cooperation and the International Space Station

||Attendees at the "Partners in Orbit" Symposium
May 16, 2016

This past April 19th marked the 5th annual symposium held by the Carmel Institute of Russian Culture and History. Under the theme of “Partners in Orbit,” over 600 students and scholars from 32 universities around the world gathered at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum to celebrate the partnership between Russia, the United States, and the International Space Station. The evening celebration kicked off with a ceremony honoring the first man in space, soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. In commemoration of the 55th anniversary of his first flight into space in 1961, the National Air and Space Museum was presented a bronze statue of the great soviet cosmonaut by the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the US, Sergey Kislyak. Thanks to the joint effort between the Embassy of the Russian Federation, the Russian Culture Center, and the International Charitable Fund “Dialogue of Cultures – United World,” US-Russian cooperation was strengthened and celebrated through the reception of the iconic bronze statue. Deputy Director, General Roscosmos, Sergei V. Saveliev remarked, “If we look into the past of humankind, we will see that there have been several universal themes going throughout human history.  One of them is this constant desire to go to the frontier of the known world, to study it, and then to go forward to the unknown.  Of course, human space flights have seen some breakthroughs and setbacks, some rivalry and some friendship, but what was universal is the idea of cooperation, which was the driving factor of many endeavors.” The highlight of the evening arrived with the “Partners in Orbit” symposium. Several key figures in the Russian and US space programs presented at the event, including Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United States Sergey Kislyak, NASA Administrator Charles F. Bolden, Deputy Director of General Roscosmos Sergei V. Saveliev, former US Ambassador to Russia John Beyrle, Deputy Director of the Central Engineering Research Institute Sergey Krikalev, and Director of the Carmel Institute Dr. Anton Fedyashin. Susan E. Carmel closed the evening with a specific focus on the students and scholars in the audience when she said, "I hope that you will recall this evening with a feeling of unlimited potential for the future, as it relates to space as well as to future cooperation between nations. Nations are made up of land, industry, and many things but most importantly, nations are people, and it is mutual respect, understanding and cooperation between people that makes this world a better and more peaceful place." IMG_5197 The symposium highlighted both US and Russian achievements in space, with special emphasis being placed on the International Space Station and its role in uniting the two countries. As Ambassador Sergey Kislyak puts it, “The kind of cooperation that we have on the International Space Station is exactly the model we need to strive for in building serious and long-term positive relations between our two countries. One of the interesting features of the ISS project is that both Russia and the United States have been able to isolate it from the crises and disagreements that we had on a number of issues that do exist between our two countries. Instead, we chose our ability to be wise and look into the future. For me, the lessons from the cooperation in the Space Station were just about that - our mutual ability to finally be wise.” With tensions between the US and Russia ever increasing, the partnership in space between the two countries provides a potential roadmap to alleviating tension on the ground and promoting cooperation through ideas and exploration. The Carmel Institute of Russian Culture and History, host to the “Partners in Orbit” symposium, also promotes cooperation through exchange programs, educational courses, and the arts. Thanks to institutions like the International Space Station and the Carmel Institute, Russia and the US are able to build a friendship in both outer space and in the classroom. [caption id="attachment_7019" align="alignnone" width="300"]Attendees at the "Partners in Orbit" Symposium Attendees at the "Partners in Orbit" Symposium[/caption] The evening ended on a cosmic high note, with delectable space food, colorful light up rocket displays, and the opportunity to explore the vast museum after hours. With such a display of friendship even in tumultuous times, there still remains hope for a future where peaceful coexistence is present both on the ground as well as among the stars. Photo credit: ImageLink photo.com  

About
Winona Roylance
:
Winona Roylance is Diplomatic Courier's Managing Editor and Special Series Editor.
The views presented in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the views of any other organization.