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Mariia Shcherbakova inaugural recipient of the Stefan and Kateryna Dwojak ISU-Ukraine Exchange Program

Mariia at Iowa State University Horse Barn
Mariia Shcherbakova assisting at the Iowa State University Horse Barn

Mariia Shcherbakova, a second-year undergraduate student studying livestock and bioresources at the National University of Life and Environmental Sciences in Kyiv, Ukraine is the 2022 inaugural recipient of the Stefan and Kateryna Dwojak ISU-Ukraine Exchange Program scholarship. Stefan "Steve" and Kateryna Dwojak developed the gift to support and facilitate a robust exchange program between Ukraine and Iowa State University.

Mariia is participating in a 5-month student internship at Iowa State University in the Department of Animal Science under the guidance of Dr. Gail Carpenter, assistant professor of extension and outreach, and Dr. Nikki Ferwerda, Associate Teaching Professor and Equine Farm Manager.

During her internship, Mariia will assist with the day-to-day operations of the Iowa State University Horse Barn including broodmare management, foaling oversight, and neonatal care. Mariia will also learn about the different nutrition and feeding regimens used within the facility and study the overall history and genetics of the horses at the facility. She will also be introduced to dairy farm management and farm evaluation, and gain hands-on experience in calf management and health.  Mariia plans to implement the skills and techniques learned while at Iowa State University on her family’s farm in Ukraine.

Mariia and Dr. David Acker
Mariia Shcherbakova and Dr. David Acker, Associate Dean for CALS Global Engagement

In Mariia’s home country, her family also runs a small cow-calf operation where they raise cattle for beef production.  Mariia has four horses that she has raised and trained and is a competitive show jumper. Upon the completion of her internship, Mariia will return to her home city of Chernihiv, Ukraine, and work to complete her undergraduate degree with an expected graduation date of June 2025.

Through the generous donations of Stefan "Steve" and Kateryna Dwojak, there are plans to bring additional Ukrainian students to Iowa State University through the “Stefan and Kateryna Dwojak ISU-Ukraine Exchange Program” in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.