Guest Writer: Wanda Urbanska
Polish Deputy Ambassador Adam Krzywosądzki visited NC State on April 21 – 23 for a weekend of high-level meetings, tours and a remarkable public lecture, capped by the recognition of the new Maciej Nowicki Polish Architecture & Design Endowment at the College of Design during its Designlife Gala. The Nowicki endowment was created by the Polish-American Club of the Triangle.
After meeting with ISE professor Brandon McConnell, Deputy Ambassador Krzywosądzki toured the state-of-the-art Fitts-Woolard Hall building, including the Center for Additive Manufacturing and Logistics (CAMAL) lab, with its five-axis CNC machines, biomedical and material development capabilities. “Incredibly impressive,” he commented while holding a 3-D printed skull prototype.
Over lunch hosted by ISE Department Head Julie Swann, campus leaders brainstormed with the Polish emissary about partnership opportunities between the Republic of Poland and NC State for academic exchange programs and economic development opportunities for Polish companies. David Goldsmith of University Libraries led a tour of James B. Hunt Library, which was followed by an exclusive showing of the highly requested archives of Maciej Nowicki at the D.H. Hill Jr. Library.
On Friday night, the deputy ambassador riveted some 90 attendees, including campus partners, students, faculty, staff and members of the local Polish and Ukrainian communities, with his presentation at the Hill Library about Poland’s crucial role in the defense of Ukraine. Olena Kozlova-Pates, president of Ukrainians in the Carolinas, thanked the Deputy Ambassador for his country’s support of Ukraine and called his presentation “superb.”
“Everyone who met the deputy ambassador — and heard him speak — was taken with him, his poise and demonstrated leadership throughout his visit,” said Dr. Mariola Kopcinski, president of the Polish- American Club of the Triangle. “Having Mr. Krzywosądzki visit Raleigh to mark this major milestone was affirming to all of us.”
The Polish-American Club of the Triangle and Taste of Poland caterers co-sponsored a traditional Polish dinner of pierogis, goląbki (stuffed cabbage rolls) and makowiec (poppyseed cake) to delighted guests.
On Saturday night, at the 75th-anniversary celebration of the College of Design, Deputy Ambassador Krzywosądzki was recognized by Dean Mark Hoversten with the presentation of the proclamation of “Maciej Nowicki Day” along with a magnificent reproduction of Nowicki’s drawing of the J.S. Dorton Arena. Maciej Nowicki, the first chairman in 1948 of the Department of Architecture at the then School of Design, was considered an architectural genius for his modernist vision in its humanistic context. The new endowment will support NC State College of Design students and faculty to study Polish architecture and design.
As the gala was winding down, one tuxedoed COD alumnus, his face filled with reverence, tapped the Deputy Ambassador on the shoulder and said, “Nowicki was a god to us.”