Vlada Trofimchuk has been glued to her phone for the past week as her home country is invaded, shelled and bombed.

In class, walking across campus at Colby College in Waterville or sitting in her dorm room, she can’t help but think about her parents in Sumy, Ukraine.

The Colby student can’t help but refresh the news apps on her phone or from ignoring the constant alerts of air raids she set up on her phone to keep track of what’s going on where her family is.

Trofimchuk, 22, is among the few Maine students from Ukraine, coming to grips with the escalating invasion of their homeland that has mobilized Western nations to impose crippling economic sanctions on Russia and raised fears of a war spilling over into greater Europe.

Danylo Shuvalov, 23, another student from Ukraine, is a fourth-year student in Bar Harbor at the College of the Atlantic. He studied for a year in Italy before coming to Maine. Both Trofimchuk and Shuvalov came here through the Davis United World College Scholars Program and, while they do not know each personally, they’ve connected online with the small network of Ukranian students elsewhere in New England.

“It’s strange being here right now because it’s kind of difficult to reconcile the two completely different worlds,” Shuvalov said. “One that I see, and the other, not only I see, but also live through on my screen, on my phone. I’m on my phone so much right now.”

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