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Island of attraction
Far Eastern Federal University is preparing for the Eastern Economic Forum
The rector of the Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU), Sergey Ivanets, in an interview with EastRussia spoke about the university's participation in the Eastern Economic Forum, as well as about what opportunities the university will give to the created territory of advanced development (TOP) on Russky Island, and what are the advantages of FEFU to the educational institutions of the countries ATP.
- Of course, we are preparing for the forum, but our task is to provide a venue for an international meeting. It is important that the forum will be held in parallel with the educational process. Classes for the second and senior courses begin on 1 September. For the first year they will begin 14 September. This does not mean the extension of the school year. We tried to optimize the schedule so as not to damage the educational process.
We try to share the events of the forum and training sessions. To conduct the WEF, large spaces are needed: conference rooms and grounds, we release them, but we also concede some of the auditoriums, as well as places for accommodation of WEF participants.
On the days of the WEF, a number of major events are planned, in which FEFU is directly involved. So, the APEC international conference on the theme “Development of human capital and inclusive economic growth” will be held, and meetings of the Cooperation Council between the Far Eastern Regions of Russia and the North-East China and the Russian Language Council under the Government of the Russian Federation will be held. Leading scientists of the world will gather at the international scientific conference Future of Biomedicine, dedicated to the development of biomedical technologies.
And, of course, we will definitely arrange campus tours for the forum participants. And we will definitely talk about innovation and research, the development of high technologies, the training of highly qualified personnel, which are priorities for FEFU. So the participants of the Vladivostok Economic Forum will be able to appreciate the full potential of the university, our willingness to cooperate and implement mutually beneficial projects.
- How many budget places are there in the university now? Do you track further employment of graduates?
- In FEFU 4447 budget places, which is 500 more than last year. FEFU completely fulfilled the target figures for admission of applicants for bachelor's and specialist programs, as determined by the Ministry of Education and Science of the Russian Federation. In total, following the results of the application campaign 2015, 9005 people from 75 RF subjects wished to study at the Far Eastern Federal University on bachelor's and full-time specialties programs. The average competition for the university was 11 people per budget place, significantly exceeding last year's figure - 8 people per seat. For individual specialties, the competition is as follows: international relations - 54 rights to a place, biochemistry and medicine - 30, computer security - 35, pedagogy - 20, heat engineering - 14 person in place. By the way, over the last two years the popularity of engineering specialties has increased noticeably.
I am pleased to note that residents of Moscow go to us to study, this year there are 24 people, 15 entrants came from St. Petersburg, there are even those who came from Kaliningrad.
As for the employment of former students, we have a service that generally tracks the fate of graduates after they receive a diploma.
We are very much interested in the existence of the FEFU alumni community, we want them not to forget their native institution after the training. We took up this work relatively recently and have already fully appreciated its importance in terms of filling the fund of target capital, when successful and successful graduates help, including financially to the native university. This is important from the point of view of employment of former students, because many of them have already become employers and employ our graduates.
So, yes, interaction with graduates is a necessary element of the university's work, another thing that is not very simple. It is not enough to take the graduate's e-mail address and inform him about the events taking place at the university. We must make him interested in what happens in his former university.
- The Russian Island becomes a territory of advanced development. What opportunities will the TOP give the university, and what are your expectations in connection with this?
- First of all, Russky Island is simply a territory for development. It seems to me that this development has been very noticeable since the summit of the member countries of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation. The de facto island became part of Vladivostok, earlier it was only declared de jure, administratively.
Secondly, now this area of active communication, it is enough to recall the number of different events that take place on the campus and on the University's embankment, especially in the summer.
Thirdly, soon on the island there will be one more, besides the university, a point of attraction and not just entertainment. I'm talking about the scientific and educational complex "Primorsky Oceanarium". In addition, there will be a residential complex for the staff of FEB RAS and FEFU.
In other words, the development of the island of Russian is. In this regard, the creation of a territory of priority development for us is extremely attractive. TOR will give the university the opportunity to create production and businesses with preferential taxation conditions, which should - I really hope so - stimulate innovative activity in the university itself. In other words, when a promising technology is developed in the course of research activity in FEFU, its authors know exactly where to run in order to create their own enterprise for the implementation and commercialization of this technology. And the conditions of Torah will require at times less financial resources to create a business, which is very important for beginners.
And further. The territory of advanced development on Russky Island is planned as a place of concentration of high-tech industries and the intellectual environment. There will be no large industrial enterprises, but there will be production with very high added value.
- In what areas of study, programs, innovations, FEFU is stronger than Western universities or educational institutions of the APR countries?
- There are training directions in the university, in which we consider ourselves strong, but let's turn to a third-party view, ratings, for example. We will not absolutize them, but they are still a certain guide.
Far Eastern Federal University has been represented for several years in the international ranking of QS World University Ranking - one of the most famous and respected ratings of the league of the best universities in the world. In 2014, FEFU entered the top 100 of the first published QS University Rankings: Emerging Europe and Central Asia.
If we consider the place of FEFU according to the QS BRICS rating, then it ranks among the hundreds of universities of the BRICS member states. This is very good, given the population of the countries included in the organization, and a huge number of universities in them. This rating uses indicators covering four key areas that underlie all QS ratings: research and training, employment, and level of internationalization.
According to the ranking of universities in Asia and the independent states of FEFU in 72-th place.
In the National University Ranking of the 2014-2015 school year, the Far Eastern Federal University rose to the 25 position, having improved its position by one point last year. FEFU has retained the position of the leader of higher education in the Far East of Russia. Among the ten federal universities, the Far Eastern University follows the fifth after Kazan, Ural, Siberian and Southern.
But I will not assure you that with the popularity of our university everything is fine. According to the general rating of universities in the world, in which there are several thousand, we are at 700 place. Although, if in this rating there were only thirteen Russian universities, and of them FEFU is the youngest, then even a good idea ...
- What, in your opinion, are the strengths and weaknesses of the modern system of higher education in general and in the Far East in particular?
- It would be strange to say that there are no problems. They are mainly associated with less motivated students to study than was typical of young people two or three decades ago.
And in general the problem is that our educational scheme is almost the same as it was many, many years ago. We only have to radically change it. But without these changes, we will not only advance in the ratings, but will also lose the achievements of recent years. In a word, changes in approaches to education have matured, but this process is always very slow.
For example, for FEFU to increase its attractiveness in the Asia-Pacific region among students and teachers, we need to introduce as many programs in English as possible in the learning process. They are. But they are few. The problem rests with the teachers: they know English at the level of easy spoken, but do not know it to such an extent as to read lectures on it and generally discuss scientific problems in English.
We are making active efforts to eliminate this gap. Created for the teaching staff a system of language retraining with an internship abroad. The system works, but in a flash it will not give results.
- FEFU together with the administration of Primorye developed the project of porto-free Vladivostok. Do you often collaborate with the administration in project development?
- We are constantly working with the administration of the region, considering at least the large number of conferences and international meetings that take place on the campus of the university. We work closely in all directions, including the Free Vladivostok Port project. University specialists participated in all discussions of this document, and almost all the main parameters that we proposed are included in the bill.
- There is a process of selling the FEFU buildings and structures that have remained on the mainland of Vladivostok. Already sold real estate for more than 540 million rubles. On this money, the second stage of the university should be built. Is it already known that this will be?
- We don’t have the right to use the money directly, we are obliged to transfer them to the federal budget. It is assumed that then, according to the standard budget process, they will be transferred to the university to organize the construction of its second phase. We have a guarantee that this will be so in the person of First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov, who himself proposed this scheme.
The Ministry of Education and Science proposes to do this through a special construction program in which we have identified the intended facilities. We are already starting to design.
- Can you name five reasons why applicants will want to study at your university?
- I do not know how many reasons will be typed, but I know from experience that the university attracts university for several reasons.
A picturesque campus. And it's not just an external picture. It attracts the way they will live and work out scientific work for several best years in their life. On the other hand, they are attracted by novelty. The campus is a novelty, everything from everyday life - where in Russia in one place are concentrated and the process of learning, and the possibility of living, and scientific work, and social and cultural life! - and ending with international meetings in which students can also take part as volunteers. In the end, the university in the status of the federal is still young, so students have the opportunity to influence the formation of life here as they want. And the rules they introduced can then become the traditions of the FEFU.