Gainesville, Florida and Rzeszow, Poland formed a sister city partnership on February 21st, 2013. A delegation of six distinguished representatives from Poland visited Gainesville. The delegation consisted of the Vice Governor of Podkarpackie Region, Mr. Sławomir Miklicz,; Mayor of Rzeszow, Mr. Tadeusz Ferenc; Chairman of the Rzeszow City Council, Mr. Andrzej Dec; Rector of the University of Rzeszow, Dr. Aleksander Bobko; Vice-Rector for Education at Rzeszow University of Technology, Dr. Adam Marcieniec; and Mrs. Marzena Furtak-Zebracka, Director of Promotion and International Cooperation Department at Rzeszow City Hall.


The two cities are similar in many ways. Rzeszow has 60,000 college students, a diverse transportation system, high school magnet programs, medical advances in cardiology and neonatal care, technology incubators and aviation, so multiple venues of exchange are possible.


Both cities share goals of economic growth and leading innovation. This Europe to USA collaboration can channel exchange in business, research and products. The city of Gainesville delegation will be planning a reciprocal trip to Poland later this year with the same arrangements.


Exchanges of children’s art, dancers, musicians, photo exhibits and videotapes have been successfully completed, and a PBS documentary, “Ask Your Sister City To Dance,” filmed during one of the visits to Novorossiisk, was broadcast throughout Florida.


Delegation met leaders of and hopes to develop collaboration with RTS, renewable energy, GRU, traffic and infrastructure management as well as programs at UF and SHANDS and multiple local companies supporting our community.


UF Medical Delegation Visit to Poland

A prominent delegation of medical scientists from University of Florida College of Medicine traveled to Poland, including College Dean Dr. Good, Dr. Notterpek the Chairman of Brain Institute, and Dr. Blakemore and Dr. Horodysky of the Orthopedic Institute, Dr. Sacino a Neuroscientist. Delegation visited Rzeszow, Bialystok, and Warsaw for multiple meetings as part of Polish-American academic collaboration initiative and as part of the Gainesville-Rzeszow sister city program.


This mission visit was very productive and gave basis to forming international project collaboration in multiple medical areas. Visit started with the visit at our sister city Rzeszow and the grand opening of the Medical School where Dr. Dean Good of UF gave the inaugural lecture. Delegation members presented their areas of specialty during the medical conference. Delegation meet in Rzeszow with President Bobko of University of Rzeszow and Dean Mazur, Vice President Marciniec of Politechnika Rzeszowska, Governor of Podkarpacie, Mr. Ortyl, and Vice Governor Mr. Kruczek, as well as Mayor Ferenc of Rzeszow and city Vice Mayors. Several focused group meetings, including in neuroscience and orthopedic fields, gave ground for further collaboration. Delegation enjoyed team events at the conference, including concert by Rzeszow Philharmonic.


In Warsaw, the National Center for R&D (NCBIR) gave an informative presentation on international opportunities and focus areas for Poland. Meeting at NCBIR included exchange of interest areas for potential projects with President Krawczyk and Vice President Majewski of Warsaw Medical University, Vice President Nowicki of Poznan Medical University, and UKSW Department Chair Nowinski. Delegation later toured the National Institute of Psychiatry and Neurology and also visited UKSW University. Florida visitors enjoyed a walk through Warsaw’s old city.


Visit in Bialystok, coincided with the ceremony of the national opening of the college year for all Medical Universities where President Niklinski of Bialystok Medical University (UMB) and presidents of medical universities gave remarks along with the Minister of Science and Education. Dr. Dean Good of presented a complementary remarks from a USA Medical College prespective. Thematic discussions with UMB leaders and scientists were enthusiastic. UMB Vice Presidents, Kretowski and Mariak, gave a tour of new medical and research facilities. Delegation appreciated beautiful setting for Medical University at the Branicki Palace. Delegation enjoyed a musical concert of Church Bells in the suburbs.


University of Florida delegation and our local hosts left with positive impressions from the meetings and are discussing next steps.

PACCE Chamber members and Gainesville-Rzeszow sister city members accompanied the delegation. Mayor Braddy of Gainesville and Mayor Ferenc of Rzeszow are pleased with the growing collaboration between the cities.