Polish Language Classes for Beginners
Hamtramck, Mich. – Piast Institute will be offering the Polish language as second language classes for adults who want to converse in Polish with those in their circle, or are thinking of taking a trip to Poland in the future. Classes are offered online via ZOOM.
The instructor, Benita Wojciechowski of the Piast Institute, encourages individuals to join the new beginner’s class, which will start up on Tuesday evenings, June 6, 2023, as an intensive Polish vacation course. This class may be, upon the students’ request, extended into the fall.
If a person has some knowledge of Polish and would like to expand on their skills, please contact the instructor for information on the ongoing intermediate and advanced classes. Individuals are allowed to attend two classes the first week, so that the student and the instructor can decide which group fits the person’s skills and needs the best. There is a possibility of taking a few individual classes, prior to joining the group, in order to catch up with the program.
The fee for the class is $25 for a 90-minute session, with a commitment for one session a week for the duration of the school year, paid monthly. A special offer is available to those who want to participate in more than one class per week – the second class fee is $10. All materials are provided with the class fees.
For registration and more information, please contact the instructor, Benita Wojciechowski, at email@example.com, or by phone at 586-354-8296 or fill out the Google form at https://tinyurl.com/PolishClasses. Mrs. Wojciechowski teaches at the Father Dabrowski Polish Language Center in Orchard Lake. She has 10 years of teaching experience both in Poland and the United States and has taught Polish and English to individuals and groups.
Polish classes for children and the youths from the Detroit Metro area are offered at four Polish schools. The schools in Hamtramck and Orchard Lake offer a special Early Start class for 2- to 4-year-old students.
St. John Paul II Polish Language School in Hamtramck
Adam Mickiewicz School of Polish Language in Sterling Heights
Polish Language Center of Ann Arbor
Father Dabrowski Polish Language Center in Orchard Lake
The website is under construction. To register, please follow the link:
These incredible students created an outstanding public service video in a Michigan statewide contest hosted by Prevention Network, that ultimately won them first prize for a weeklong trip to attend a training conference. This mid-year CADCA or the Community Anti Drug Coalitions of America conference will be from July 16-20, at Grapevine, Texas this year. The students winnings cover the cost of airline travel and lodging but not ground transportation or food. Consider donating to the GoFundMe page: https://gofund.me/2b0e1829 to help cover these essential expenses.
The public service announcement (PSA) video was a challenging contest. Within an hour, the students had to create a video on their cell phones. The local team was vying against competitors from across the state. There were nearly 100 youths who attended the Youth Coalition Leadership Retreat, April 17, as part of the new Michigan Youth Coalition Network (MYCN) program. The Hamtramck All Stars focused their video on vaping prevention, emphasizing that statistics show the majority of peers their age do not vape, and vaping is not worth missing time with their friends.
Per diem costs are $64 per day for food (breakfast, lunch, dinner) and $48 for first and last day of travel for $288 per student.
+ $100 travel to airport, hotel,
x 8 people for a total of $3,104.00
Please consider additional donations to cover processing fees from GoFundMe.
Checks can also be mailed to:
Piast Institute at 11633 Joseph Campau, Hamtramck MI 48212 with Memo: All Stars
Dr. Dominik Stecula, Ph.D., will offer a current in-depth look at Polish Americans on Friday, May 19, 2023, in a free lecture from 6-8 p.m. at the Warren Civic Center Library, 1 City Square (Warren, Michigan). He holds a doctorate in political science from the University of British Columbia and is an associate professor of political science at Colorado State University.
His 2010 book, Polish Americans Today: Modern Polonian Leadership, was written jointly with the late Thaddeus C. Radzilowski, Ph.D., co-founder of the Piast Institute in Hamtramck, founded in 2003.
Building on that initial project, the second edition of the book, Polish Americans Today was published in 2021. Both editions were published by the Piast Institute and were based on surveys. This second edition is the only national survey of Polish Americans and offers the most detailed data-driven look at the Polish American community, according to Stecula. With the lecture, the researcher will paint a comprehensive picture of American Polonia and focus on the attitudes, demographics, identities, and cultural activities of the Polish American community.
This program is part of the 20th anniversary celebration of the Piast Institute. Stecula’s book will be available for purchase at the lecture. To register online for the lecture today, go to: https://rb.gy/lqiinl, walk-ins are also encouraged to attend. Previously, author Imogene Salva delivered a lecture in March, in which she detailed her mother’s World War II experience as one of many Polish children refugees who were given sanctuary in India by a generous benefactor, an Indian maharajah. The lecture was based on her book, One Star Away.
Stecula co-authored the first edition of Polish Americans Today as a research assistant under Radzilowski. His research has been featured in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and other news outlets in the United States and abroad. His articles have appeared in USA Today, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Washington Post and Newsweek, among others. As a Polish immigrant, he also writes about American politics for Polish publications like Polityka, Gazeta Wyborcza and Kultura Liberalna. Stecula served as the research director at the Piast Institute and added that since the fall of 2018, he serves on its board of directors.
Directed by Virginia Skrzyniarz, Piast co-founder and current CEO, the 2020 Polish American Survey formed the basis for the 2021 book. It focuses on demographics, beyond the Census data, according to Stecula. He said, “Our national survey of nearly 81,800 Polish Americans is therefore the best source of information about our community: who we are, what we believe, how connected we are to Poland … all of these questions are answered in the book.”
Since its inception in 2003, the Piast Institute has grown to become a nationally recognized nonprofit research center that focuses on Polish and Polish American Affairs. Named after the first dynasty of Poland, the Piast Institute began its 20-year journey in Detroit, Michigan.
In 2005, the Institute moved to Hamtramck, where Polish immigrants had settled and thrived since the early 1900s. In 2006, it was designated as an official Census Information Center by the U.S. Census Bureau, one of 48 centers in the nation. As part of its community outreach, the Institute provides programs to help prevent substance abuse among Hamtramck youth with the aid of their parents and teachers.
This program is co-financed from the Polish community funds of the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland in Chicago.
For more information, visit www.piastinstitute.org or call the office at (313) 733-4535.
The Piast Institute invites the public to hear author Imogene Salva share the true-life story of her mother Jozefa (Ziuta) Nowicka, and her family, who survived the WW II ordeal of deportation from their homeland of eastern Poland to a Siberian labor camp. Her book is called, “One Star Away.” Salva, an educator, said, “I am honored to tell my mother’s story. Growing up in New York City, I realized that my mother’s wartime experiences were shared by thousands and remain relatively unknown to the rest of the world.”
Piast Institute is proud to host Salva, Thursday, March 9, from 6-8 p.m. at the Warren Civic Center Library, 1 City Square. A link to Eventbrite: https://rb.gy/gox7jk has been added for individuals to RSVP for this special lecture, although walk-ins are also encouraged to attend. Her appearance is the first of a two-part lecture series sponsored by Piast to mark its 20th anniversary year.
In the Soviet labor camp, the Nowicki family suffered near starvation, disease, separation and arctic temperatures, until the father Konstanty (Kostek) was further emboldened to secure the escape of his wife Teodora (Tola) and six children from the camp. Their love for each other and their strong faith sustained them through the arduous journey toward freedom.
Eventually, Ziuta, with her older sister, Jadwiga (Jadzia) and their brother, Jozef (Jozek) found a second homeland during the years of 1942-1947 in an unlikely part of the world – India. This major accomplishment was due to the efforts of Polish General Sikorski who reached out to other countries to take in 500 Polish refugee children. And a generous benefactor in the form of an Indian Maharajah responded to his request.
Throughout her childhood, author Imogene Salva, traveled yearly to Poland. She studied in France and earned an M.A. in TESOL or Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. A resident of Colorado, she has taught Spanish, Polish and French, K-12, in New York City and Colorado.
A nonprofit organization, the Piast Institute has grown for 20 years into a national research and policy center for Polish and Polish American Affairs and is one of 48 Census Information Centers in the country. For more information, call the office at (313) 733-4535 or visit www.piastinstitute.org.
Happy Anniversary Piast Institute
Hamtramck, Mich. – The Piast Institute is proud to announce its 20th anniversary celebration. What started as a brainstorm in 2003 of Dr. Thaddeus C. Radzilowski and Ms. Virginia Skrzyniarz became a nationally recognized nonprofit research center that focused on Polish and Polish American affairs. Named after the first dynasty of Poland, the Piast Institute began its 20-year journey in Detroit, Michigan. In 2005, the Institute moved to Hamtramck where Polish immigrants had settled and flourished since the early 1900s.
In 2006, it was designated as an official Census Information Center (CIC) by the U.S. Census Bureau, one of 48 centers in the nation. The Institute’s mission and programming aim is to celebrate Polish contributions to America as well as world culture and history.
Over the years, the Piast Institute has grown its work to include community outreach and has become a strong voice in promoting prevention of substance abuse for the youth of the community. As an integral part of the community, the Piast Institute supports and promotes the long history of diversity and cultural exchange that is still a vital part of Hamtramck. The Institute sponsors annual events that celebrate the rich history of Polish Americans and Poles and encourages healthy lifestyles for both the youth and the community at large.
Over the next 12 months, the Piast Institute will host several events to celebrate its 20th anniversary. In March, Professor Imogene Salva will present and discuss her book, “One Star Away” – the story of her mother’s journey from war-torn Poland to Russia, Iran and finally India. In May, Dr. Dominik Stecula will review his book, “Polish Americans Today”, giving a firsthand look at the current values and beliefs of Polish Americans across the country. If you would like more information about the Institute or these and other upcoming events or would like to make a donation, visit www.piastinstitute.org.
Upcoming Events for 2023
Happy New Year 2023! Below are some upcoming events and announcements from Piast Institute.
The Piast Institute turns 20 in 2023!
2023 will mark 20 years that the Piast Institute has been in existence. Several events will be held throughout the year to celebrate. From its very modest beginning in a house on Talbot to its current location on Joseph Campau, the Institute has become a strong presence and a source of community pride in Hamtramck.
Two Author Series -Polish Americans Today and Yesterday
In March 2023 the Piast Institute will host, in the first part of a series, author Imogene Salva who will discuss her family’s experiences that she has related in her book, ”One Star Away.”
When Soviet soldiers force their way into the Nowicki home at 3:00am, Ziuta has no idea why her family is being arrested, where they are going or when they will return. From the safety of home in Poland to the slave labor camps of Soviet Russia, Ziuta's family suffers starvation, arctic temperatures, and separation. At their most desperate hour, only a miracle would keep each family member alive. Could a kind-hearted Maharaja from faraway India be the one to rescue Ziuta and hundreds of other distressed Polish children? Imogene Salva reconstructs her mother's wartime experiences to expose us to a part of World War II history not familiar to most Westerners. This thought-provoking true-life story is sure to inspire, while reminding us that human compassion can be found in the most remote corners of the world.
In May 2023, we will host the second part of the series of Polish Americans Today and Yesterday. Dr. Dominik Stecula will discuss the findings of the 2020 Polish American survey that resulted in the publication of second edition of Polish Americans Today in 2020. Dr. Stecula will offer insights and explanations of some of the unpublished data as well as discussion of the data from the book itself.
Piast Institute Building is 100!
The Piast Institute is located in the former Pieronek Photography Studio that was built in 1923. A celebration will be held in 2023 to honor the historic building and all the many events-weddings, communions, families-that were commemorated with photos. The building that was not only the studio but the home of the Pieronek family for many years was donated by Dr. Joann Pieronek to the Piast Institute in 2005.
Polish Language Exam
HAMTRAMCK, MICHIGAN -- Thanks to the organizer, Piast Institute, thirty-two students participated in the STAMP4S exam for the Polish language, held November 5 and 12. They were tested for their knowledge of the English language and at least one foreign language in four categories; writing, reading, speaking, and listening.
Those who fulfill the criteria, including age requirements and scores as determined by the Michigan Department of Education, receive the state Seal of Biliteracy. Others who were not eligible for the state Seal due to their age or lower scores, but who still reached scores accepted by the Global Seal of Biliteracy, will obtain the certificate. The Department of Education of participating states issues the certificate, or it is issued by the Global Seal of Biliteracy examiners.
According to Marzanna Owinski, director of Cultural and Educational Programs at Piast, "The goals of the Seal of Biliteracy program are to encourage students to become bilingual and to honor their language skills. The Seal proves language competencies essential for future employers and when applying for colleges and universities."
For more information about the exam or Seal of Biliteracy, contact Marzanna Owinski at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 313-733-4535.
The Piast Institute is a national institute for Polish and Polish American Affairs, a research and policy center and Census Information Center. Piast Institute will celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2023.
Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2021-2022
Below is a link to Piast Institute's Annual Report which begins on October 1, 2021 until September 30, 2022.