Interview with the Rector

Interview with the Rector of Lomonosov Moscow State University V.A.Sadovnichy

IMG_8630It is no secret that the establishment of a new university is an important event in the scientific and academic life of any country. While it is yet even more important when a branch of Moscow State University is being established. This year a branch of MSU has opened its doors to the Yerevan audience. The university rector Viktor Sadovnichy met with freshmen on September 18. He addressed the students with a speech and wished them success in their studies and answered their questions. We had a chance to ask him several questions.

– You arrived in Yerevan yesterday night. What were your impressions about the evening city?

– It has been a long time since I last visited Yerevan, it was many years ago. Those were hard times – Armenia was in the blockade and there were problems with electricity. Still, Yerevan seemed a very beautiful city. This time I saw a little. We took a tour in the downtown, saw the main square of the country, as well as several buildings. And now, the branch capmus is so beautiful. It seemed to me that this is now a different Yerevan. A different face of the city. I am glad that things are changing for the better.

– Viktor Antonovich, what was your reaction to the suggestion to open a branch in Yerevan?

IMG_8606– Of course, I supported immediately. But we have to state that to create a branch in a different country is a long process. The most important thing is accountability. Thus, for instance, we announced everyone that the branch is now open and students had been recruited. What’s next? To shut down the branch is impossible which will leave the students offended. We had to elaborate the trajectory for the branch to be opened, to teach, and have an eternal life. It required a number of intergovernmental decisions and we were working on it for a pretty long time. It wasn’t easy as it had to do with big financial investments. The key issue for us was to track down financial capability in order for the branch to thrive. It has been found now. We have an agreement with private companies so that the branch can become full-fledged.

– What impressions did the branch students make on you?

– According to age, they are like my grandchildren. Like yourself, pretty and looking at me with your smart eyes. It makes me happy that the youth in Armenia strives to ponder. Students are always wonderful. I love students.

– So you think that there’s not much difference between us and our predecessors?

– Absolutely not. We had exactly the same pictures with freshmen a month ago. All are so young, ambitious and energetic.

– What are your plans regarding the further development of the university? Will there more branches?

– We have six branches, 5 of which are abroad and one in Sevastopol. We do not intend to establish any more branches in the near future. We don’t pursue any commercial intention. Our goal is education that is why before establishing a branch we calculate how it will go on in the future because to create a branch and assume that it will survive due to tuition fees is a mere commercial basis. We don’t do it at MSU. We always count on the fact that students will be able to study for the country, by means of the country’s budget or at least that MSU does not have profit off of it. We do not have a cent worth of profit, all we do is invest our means in the branch. It is a very responsible decision. In my view, MSU is the only university in Russia which doesn’t create branches because of profit or generating income. We do establish branches only for giving knowledge, skills, and programs.

– Thank you for the interview. We look forward to seeing you in Yerevan again!

The interview was conducted by first year student of Journalism Department Liana Varderesyan.
Photo credit – Raya Khachatryan, first year student of Journalism Department.