Teaching foreign citizens in Russia

More than 150 years ago, foreign citizens have already started coming to Russia with the purpose of getting quality education. Beginning from the middle of the 19th century, universities of the Russian Empire opened their doors for students from more than ten countries all around the world. The educational system in our country has a good reputation and has always been open to talented young people, regardless of the birth, wealth, religion or nationality. Moreover, people who studied in our country have always been appreciated for the broad scope and comprehensive quality of their knowledge.

Indeed, the influx of foreign students reached its grandiose scale in the Soviet era. As early as 1924, the USSR got "the recognition" from the leading countries of the world and began to invite representatives from different countries to pursue higher education. Military and engineering professions enjoyed special prestige. For example, almost one third of the army of Nazi Germany, Italy, Spain and other countries of Central and Eastern Europe had their training in Soviet military schools. Further development of successful educational contacts was interrupted by the World War II.

After the end of World War II, the USSR resumed and expanded the practice of teaching foreign students.  Nowadays, this activity has reached truly outstanding results. Over 1 million foreigners from more than one hundred and fifty countries have graduated Soviet and Russian universities at various times. Approximately, half a million graduates of Soviet and Russian universities work in Israel. Moreover since 1943, only military institutes of the USSR and Russia have trained 450.000 highly qualified specialists for 93 countries around the world. Tens of thousands of foreign nationals received master's degrees, Ph.D. degrees, and scholarly titles. Among them are mostly residents of Asia, Africa, Latin America and Europe.  More than three hundred thousand Russian graduates work in Arab countries. In some countries, almost half of all engineering employees and more than half of the scholars are graduates of Russian institutes.

The number of Russian universities' alumni includes leaders at various levels (Presidents, Prime Ministers, speakers of Parliament, Ministers, parliamentarians, and heads of national armies), top leaders of scientific schools, rectors of major universities, art and culture celebrities, influential political and business figures, and creative intelligentsia. Year after year, the professional success of thousands of people, who have Soviet and Russian diplomas, is perceived as the main factor in convincing young people from all corners of the world to choose Russian Universities.  Alumni have proven the solid foundation of Russian education by their own examples and actions.  The Russian educational system is still one of the best in the world. A Soviet or a Russian diploma has been considered as a sign of the highest quality. Today the doors of Russian universities are opened annually for 90 thousand people from more than 160 countries around the world, who are students, persons undergoing on-the-job training, and improving their skills personnel. The number of those people increases every year. The majority who want to improve their academic and professional qualifications in Russia are Russian school graduates, returning to Russia to continue education, upgrade their qualifications, and enter internship or postgraduate degree programs. Now, more than 600 Russian institutions of higher education train more than 120.000 of foreign people.

I believe that thousands of graduates from Russian universities succeed in their professional life and become prosperous figures mostly because they obtained their degrees in the Soviet Union and Russia. Additionally, they had a chance to get acquainted with Russian scientific schools, culture, and art. For most of them living in the USSR and Russia has become a significant phase in the formation of their identity.  Therefore, so many graduates of Russian schools consider Russia their second home and second motherland, and they maintain regular interest in everything that happens in Russia. And, of course, most of the graduates are proud that they have been educated in a country where science, technology, and culture thrive. Growth and enhancement of Russian graduates' statuses in different countries strengthen the position of Russia in the international arena.  Accordingly, most of the graduates of Russian schools appreciate the country which gave them "a start in life" and are ready to contribute to the promotion and development of Russian culture.

They tend to participate in Russian scientific conferences and maintain close ties with Russian universities in order to increase the knowledge of their specialties.  People, who have graduated from Russian universities, would like to regularly receive materials on recent achievements of Russian Science and modern scientific publications. A very important priority for them remains the possibility of further training, including internships and training in postgraduate and doctoral studies. At the same time, many graduates intend to invite to their countries leading Russian experts to deliver lectures on various scientific fields. Undoubtedly, such collaboration will strengthen international scientific relations.

At the same time, those citizens who have received education in Russia and loved her are ready to strengthen the prestige of the Russian higher education and enhance the interest of young people to seek education in Russia. In today's world, an authority and influence of countries are mostly determined by their intellectual potential, development of science and higher education.

National Alumni Associations of graduates are established in more than 70 countries.  These organizations unite Russian school graduates and provide the maintenance of contacts with universities, teachers, classmates, as well as continuing their training in Russia. National associations are the basis in which grows the worldwide movement of Soviet and Russian students. National Associations, together with Russian cultural centers regularly carry out activities to acquaint people with Russia, its advanced science and rich culture, and systematically maintain business contacts with the Russian embassies in their own countries.  National Alumni Associations are actively engaged in the promotion of Russian Institutions' achievements in the international education market. Today, 45 Russian scientific and cultural centers function in 40 countries. Learning the Russian language there could be the first step for foreign students in obtaining higher education in Russia.

First of all, Russian educators are proud of those whom they helped to get a start in professional life. Over a half century, our country generously shares its knowledge and culture with other countries, training highly-qualified specialists in various fields. In Russia, foreign students have gotten updated scientific and cultural knowledge which let them enter successfully not only  economical, scientific, cultural and public activities, but also become public leaders.

This data testifies that Russian scientific and cultural potential is in demand worldwide, and our country generously shares its intellectual resources with other countries. The fact that students from all over the world are coming here to get good education is an enormous responsibility and a great honor for Russia.  According to thousands of foreign students, it is possible for any person who studies in Russia to gain the highest level of knowledge, based on advanced achievements of modern science. Many of them have noted that those who were educated in the Soviet Union or Russia are marketable now in the business and intellectual world. Many graduates, especially in Western countries, search for a job much longer than Russian graduates. This fact underscores the universality of Russian education.

For decades, the USSR and Russia have been spending colossal resources to provide quality education for foreign citizens, understanding the need that many countries have for the highly qualified personnel. Those graduates, armed with cutting-edge knowledge, came to be the first specialists in their respective countries and have become a backbone in the building of national economies in various states; especially in those states that have gained independence only after World War II and where the biggest economic problem was the lack of trained manpower, particularly in science and technology. This fact has evoked a sense of gratitude and respect from the cultural elite of multiple countries. In particular, acquiring high quality Russian education and mastering the Russian language, as a means of international communication, have been the primary reason for most of the African people to get political and economic independence. Many countries have gained from the USSR spiritual and intellectual capital and achieved impressive social and humanistic accomplishments during the second half of the last century.

Studying in the USSR and Russia not only enabled young Africans to become excellent engineers, but also gave them an opportunity to pursue their dreams in a political arena, be active fighters against apartheid, and grow as talented politicians and leaders of the youth and women's movements,  and, thereby, promote  progressive reconstruction of their countries. The USSR and Russia have always been supporters of international justice and protectors of oppressed people, and will continue to defend their basic human rights of self-determination and well-being.

Foreign students learn about the richness and uniqueness of Russian history and culture and make friends for life during their study period in our Homeland.  Upon graduation, most of them have become envoys of Russia in the most remote corners of the globe, extending Russia's rich cultural and spiritual heritage. This fact shapes an image of Russia in the global community as a peace-loving State and an open, reliable and responsible partner in addressing global and regional problems. Russia has played a positive role in re-establishing international security within the framework of international law, justice and peace-loving forces.

For hundreds of thousands of people the Russian language has become the language of interethnic communication. Pushkin and Lermontov, Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky, Chekhov and Bunin, Lobachevsky and Vernadsky, Pavlov and Mendeleev, Korolov and Kurchatov spoke the Russian language, which is the basis of our culture and the essence of our national spiritual wealth. Most graduates not only talk Russian fluently but also develop the comprehension of the Russian mentality. Whenever they meet somewhere in Europe or on another continent, they are always very happy to see each other, regardless of their religious or political beliefs. By speaking Russian language they promote Russian culture all over the world because the heart of any culture is its language. Strengthening the position of the Russian language and Russian culture causes the greatest interest of the world public to Russia, its history and contemporary life, foreign policy and economy and contributes to an objective perception of our country as a consistent, predictable and reliable ally in confronting new challenges and threats as well as an attractive economic partner.

Living in Russia, students from different countries accumulate their own life experience and absorb the expertise of other students who come from countries with different levels of development. The main thing is that they learn to live together in peace, mutual understanding and friendship with different peoples. This communication and interaction promotes their understanding of world history and the common problems of nations.  Exactly, this international education with quality training allows foreign students to prove a high level of Russian education.

Students of all kinds mutually understand and help each other; they possess the feeling of camaraderie and respect for the cultures of other peoples. And today, the good traditions of the students' fraternity live and provide a good basis for new contacts, and cultural and business initiatives which unify our peoples.

Under such circumstances, the young and creative students bear the determination in their minds to work for the improvement of the lives of their people. Holding a more or less high position in their country, graduates of Russian universities are able to inform their governments and those organizations where they work about the most acute problems of interethnic dialogue, cooperation, and justice; and thus, they play an important role in shaping a better world. Moreover, the students' strong friendships between representatives of diverse peoples becomes the basis of direct cultural and business contacts, fair and open business cooperation, and rapprochement between peoples. In each country, people have their own characteristics, certain business rules that must be taken into consideration when building business contacts. Indeed, graduates of Russian schools can provide invaluable service to Russian businessmen.

And, above all, the former students of Russian universities in their countries represent the group which forms the willingness of local elites, businesses, and educated public to cooperate with Russian organizations and Russia as a whole. It is encouraging that the majority of graduates are in constant connection with Russia, which gave them an education.

Nowadays, in a global labor market, common approaches and requirements for the quality of education have been developed; also, the practice of mutual recognition of documents is being spread. Russia seeks to meet these high standards; with this purpose Russia joined the Bologna Convention on higher education. Of course, the Russian educational system improves constantly and strives to meet the needs and interests of foreign students.  The victories of our pupils and students on global and international Olympiads and growing demand for our specialists in leading scientific and industrial centers of the world speak about the high-level of Russian education.

Mankind has entered the twenty-first century with serious problems.  There are some new, alarming trends in the current world politics. In order to strengthen peace and international security, with the aim of development and prosperity of all peoples inhabiting the Earth, a dialogue of cultures and a consolidation of all the active forces of the planet are necessary.

Since 1991, profound changes have happened in international relations. Humanity moved from equilibrium, guaranteed by a bipolar system, to a state of imbalance. Therefore, building a new unipolar world motivates the need for dialogue and coexistence of different peoples and civilizations, respect for the international law, and maintaining the culture of peoples. Many thought that after the collapse of the USSR, Russia would become a weak country and lose its influence on the course of world history, but such assumptions turned out to be futile. Russia has always had a special place in world history. Russia is a Eurasian power with the distinctive history and one of the best in the world educational systems. Russia, as a great country, is committed to spiritual and harmonious human development.

For many centuries, Russia has been one of the leaders in world science and culture and has produced many masterpieces of art. Since 1991, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, a new system of independent States as well as a new national economy and social system of Russia have been created. And this event, of course, made an impact on Russia's education system, particularly at its universities. The Russian University system not just endured during the global transformation of the socio-economic system of the country, but has developed dynamically all these 20 years. We have managed to preserve the traditions of the Soviet school, which gave the world one of the best educational systems; at the same time, we are constantly getting rich from the world experience. This is demonstrated by the prestige of our finest universities, science areas, new humanitarian specialties, and growing competition in our universities. Western companies offer jobs to Russian graduates, which gives evidence that Russian high school is in demand worldwide.  Thousands of Russian professors teach in many universities of the world, for example, Russian professors teach Chinese students in some American Universities. The main principles of the Russian education system are statehood, depth, and the internationalization of higher education.

The training of specialists for foreign countries in the Russian educational institutions is an important aspect of Russia's foreign policy objectives, as defined by its geopolitical interests in the world today.

The United States National Commission on Science and Education predicts that in 20-25 years, American people could fall behind because of the poor scientific and basic training provided in schools. On the contrary, Russian education has always had a high level of such training, and our goal is to preserve and develop it. Exactly, basic science has always been and will be the foundation of university education in Russia; therefore, ensuring the fact that Russia has always been advanced in mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, and engineering sciences. In particular, the Russian mathematical school is considered one of the best in the world.

Coming to study in Russia is the right choice because you will get education that meets the needs of the twenty-first century.

In order to improve the interaction of the Russian educational system with foreign nationals, Information-Coordinating Center «Sputnik» was created. Its main task is to assist the citizens of foreign countries in obtaining and continuing education in the Russian Federation.

To achieve this goal, ICC «Sputnik» plans to establish a working relationship with all national alumni associations of Russian institutions of higher learning, as well as with the International Coordinating Council of Alumni «INCORVUZ-XXI».

Information-Coordinating Center «Sputnik» organizes overseas presentations of Russian institutions of higher learning, engages in enrollment and training candidates who want to study in Russia. ICC «Sputnik» organizes Russian language training for foreign citizens, including distance learning courses.

«Sputnik» develops an initiative of sending leading Russian professors and teachers to give lectures, seminars, and conferences on the priority areas of science and technology, health care, and the Russian language in the countries abroad.

«Sputnik»   is currently considering the possibility of regular shipment of modern scientific and educational literature in Russian, audio and video materials to supply or build regular and online libraries on request of the Association of graduates.

«Sputnik» develops an initiative of effective interaction between the educational and the business community, which accentuate its attention on the practice of multichannel funding of education.

We are about to open a webpage on our site to help foreign students exchange their experiences and get consultations on scientific fields.

One of the priorities of the ICC «Sputnik» is a creation of the qualification improvement system for the graduates. This system is based on the best Russian universities.  We also inform the foreign graduates of the upcoming scientific and educational conferences and seminars, as well as other events of interest to alumni. Our Center provides information, research and methodological and organizational support to the programs of training, retraining, and qualification upgrade of foreign citizens in the Russian universities according to the demand in overseas education and labor markets.  «Sputnik»    extends the experience of advanced educational technologies and facilitates the export of Russian educational services.

«Sputnik» provides advice and legal assistance in addressing the academic and professional recognition of diplomas of Russian universities at home and in third world countries. «Sputnik» facilitates interaction with a Network of national information centers on academic recognition and mobility (ENIC/NARIC Networks) on recognition of Russian diplomas abroad, whose basic principles were laid down in the corresponding "Guide" in Helsinki in 1997.

At the «Sputnik» site you can learn about modern active Federal State educational standards and existing bilateral and multilateral agreements on academic and professional recognition of diplomas.

Our Center provides favorable conditions for foreign students (comfortable accommodation, leisure, health care, and safety).

Our training centre organizes beautiful trips that allow you to become more familiar with Russia, its rich history, culture, and traditions.

Long-term directions and tasks

1.  Development of distance learning, especially in the area of specialization and internships will be offered.

2. We will strive to create essential tools to expand the information on our achievements in the field of scientific and technical progress.

3. Development of a network of branches of Russian universities and cooperative educational institutions abroad will be provided.

4. A need exists for the development and signing of intergovernmental agreements on the recognition of diplomas and academic degrees that the Governments of countries where graduates of Russian schools work recognize them as professionals, especially in countries where the degree of "bachelor" means incomplete university degree.

Cities of training
  "Our representatives"

  Mr. Karwan H.F Jwamer
   Kurdistan Region -Sulaimani-Iraq
        Tell: +07701428111
    P.O.Box 442