by Andy Kozlov
Last update March 17, 2014
When I stopped by Rotary centre in central Harare (between the US and Russian Embassies) last March to have lunch at the school of hospitality that operates from there – Meikles-like meals for less money – I was greeted by an usual poster. “Study in Russia!” announced a message fashioned in a colorful way. What I was to find out in a room next door was that RACUS, a Russian organization, was holding an educational exhibition there for Zimbabwean aspirants. The exhibition was held by the official delegation from Russia conjointly with their local representative in Zimbabwe TP World Students Services.
Zimbabwean school pupils and their parents, current students, and graduates of Russian universities visited the presentations at Rotary. The visitors considering Russia as a place of study were provided with necessary information about education in more than 15 Russian state universities. These offer more than 300 medical, technical, engineering, economical specialties and the humanities.
Last year I trained a group of young Zimbabwean marketers about place/nation branding techniques. (See Destination marketing: lessons for Zimbabwe) In a flash exercise, I asked them to write down five words that come into their mind when they think of Russia. Needless to say, most of my students thought of something either ‘soul-warming’ like vodka or ‘blood-freezing’ (AK rifles) – all the way down to sub-zero cold (vast land under the blanket of snow). (See Nenets of the North)
Despite such popular perceptions, Russia, the largest country in the world by territory, has lots of assets that Zimbabwean youth can benefit from. Plus, the Russian government is ready to pay for such opportunities.
Russia boasts a great number of Nobel Prize winners, world-wide known names in culture and sport as well as rich natural resources. Today dozens of students from all parts of the world come to Russia to get education for reasonable prices. There are more than 165,000 foreign students from 200 countries who study in Russia.
The education for foreign students at Russian state universities is retorted to be partially subsidized by the Russian government (up to 80%). The average cost of tuition and accommodation in university hostels depends on the specialization, university, city and the language of education (USD 2,500 – 4,500 per one academic year). Food expenses per one month are about USD 250-300.
RACUS, a group of more than 15 Russian universities, has been helping foreign students and their parents to make the right choice of an university for more than 20 years.
According to RACUS, upon completion of studies, the graduate receives a higher education degree of Russian national standard and also an additional document upon request – “European Appendix” to the degree. This allows its holder to get equivalence to educational documents either in Russia or in any Western country.
The name RACUS is an abbreviation of its first four departments:
Russian-Arabic Centre for
Russian-Asian Centre for
Russian-African Centre for
Russian-American Centre for
Did you know? Facts about the Russian Federation
Russia is the biggest country in the world by territory, and home to 160 different ethnic groups.
Russia will host the 2014 Winter Olympics and the 2018 FIFA World Cup. (See Switch on Ukraine! – To then do what?)
Circa 80% of professors at Russian universities hold at least one PhD degree.
International students entering a Russian state university through RACUS get all necessary professional support and guidance throughout the whole period of study (up to 7 years).
The Russian language is one of the key languages of international communication. It is one of the United Nations official languages. Russian is the most geographically widespread language in Eurasia. More than 350 million people speak at least a bit of Russian. Russian is the official language of space. All astronauts learn Russian.
Russian tourists travel to all corners of the planet. Knowledge of Russian often helps those in the hospitality business to move up the career ladder. (See Global Tourism Prospects and Trends)
Russian is an Indo-European language. It borrowed many words from other European languages. Because of this fact, it’s easier to learn Russian (rather than, say, Mandarin). (See Kramatorsk. A Global Intersection) By learning Russian, you get introduced to French and German. (See What’s in your bag, Wladimir Kaminer? Slash 8, a piece of ginger and other requisites of Russo-German creative scapes)
Learning Russian will give you the opportunity to read the masterpieces of world-class writers, who wrote in Russian, in the original: Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky, Chekhov, Gogol. (See Tendai Huchu’s review of Marina Lewycka’s Two Caravans and The Russian Barber of Harare)
Alexander Pushkin’s great-grandfather was a native Ethiopian who assisted the Russian Emperor, Peter the Great, to modernize Russia several centuries back. (See Multikulti Ukraine)
You can write to Andy Kozlov on firstname.lastname@example.org