Estonian Ambassador Kristjan Prikk Engages Queens University Students in Discussion on Europe's Future
Queens University of Charlotte recently welcomed Estonian Ambassador Kristjan Prikk to campus for a dynamic student-led discussion titled “Russia, Ukraine, Europe, and Beyond: Objectives, Risks, Opportunities.” The event was an opportunity to share global perspectives with students regarding international diplomacy and other issues abroad.
“As an institution that actively promotes global understanding – not only within our classrooms but also through experiential learning and international travel– we are excited to participate in this annual collaboration between The N.C. Zeitgeist Foundation and the Alliance Française,” said Queens University President Dan Lugo. ”Each year, they commemorate the anniversary of the Élysée Treaty, now 61 years old, by inviting an ambassador from another country to offer their perspective on the European Union. This year, we are pleased to welcome Estonian Ambassador Prikk to Queens.”
Klaus Becker, chair of The N.C. Zeitgeist Foundation and president of Nirosteel, LLC, worked with Queens student Emmanuel Omari’26 to coordinate Ambassador Prikk’s visit. “This event is a wonderful example of the work of the N.C. Zeitgeist Foundation. For the past 10 years, we’ve strongly supported development and growth in the greater Charlotte region while improving trans-Atlantic relations. Ambassador Prikk’s visit to Charlotte is another way in which he conveys his commitment to strengthening democracy and sharing Estonia’s powerful voice in the European Union.”
Serving as the Estonian Ambassador to the United States since May 2021, Prikk is a seasoned diplomat with extensive experience in European affairs. While at Queens, he engaged in a lively exchange with a diverse group of students. The conversation delved into the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, its ramifications for European security, and the future trajectory of the continent. Students posed insightful questions about topics ranging from NATO’s role in the current crisis to the potential for long-term peace and stability in the region.
“It was an honor to engage with the Queens University community,” Prikk said. “Students often provide sincere and direct feedback about the complex issues facing our world today. I hope that my visit inspired some of these students to pursue careers in international service because they are the next generation of leaders who will shape the future.”
Queens student Emmanuel Omari ’26, a native of Accra, Ghana, shared his enthusiasm about being involved in the Ambassador’s visit.
“As a high schooler in Ghana, I looked forward to attending a college where I had the accessibility to engage with influential leaders from around the world,” shared Omari. “Being able to work so closely with our community partners to bring Ambassador Prikk to campus was a dream for me. It was really special to see my fellow classmates participate in this experience as well. I am so grateful to be able to experience these opportunities at Queens.”