A recent exhibition on higher education conducted by the cultural department of the Consulate General of the Russian Federation was a window of opportunity to students who want to pursue professional courses in Russia.
AFTER GREAT Britain, Australia and the United States, it is now Russia's turn to make (all out?) efforts to woo Indian students to their Universities. The cultural department of the Consulate General of the Russian Federation conducted an exhibition on higher education in Hyderabad last week.
Over half a dozen universities/ institutes offering courses primarily in medicine and engineering - participated in the exhibition. Officials from the respective universities too were here counselling students and assisting them in all matters relating to admissions. "The response has been better than what we had last time. A good number of enquiries came in," says Ravi Chandran, Managing Director, Study Abroad-Russian Cultural Centre.
The plus point of Russian education is the quality and coupled with it are the cost benefits. There are no cut-off marks. A student with 50-60 per cent marks gets a seat in medicine. Costs are indeed a major consideration when contemplating education overseas. Compared with the fee structure elsewhere in the West, education in Russia is relatively cheap. Says Ravi Chandran, "that (costs) would of course depend on the course undertaken, the medium of study and the location."
Further, scholarships covering up to 100 per cent of the tuition fees and the living expenses are also available. They would, obviously, depend on merit.
A major constraint of studying in Russia is the language. Doubtless, the xenophobia is long gone with the cold war and English is fast making inroads and yet, lack of knowledge of Russian would be a definite handicap for a discerning student.
For one, access to some of the best books gets restricted since they are in Russian. "But", says Ravi Chandran, "considering that a lot more international students are joining the universities in Russia, preparatory courses in Russian language of up to nine months duration are available.
And several universities offer courses in English medium too.
"The exhibition was certainly a window of opportunity opened to the motley group of students who attended and the demand for courses in medicine was impressive.
The MBBS degree from over 50 universities in Russia are recognised by the Medical Council of India (MCI).
There was more than a modicum of variety in the engineering courses offered, ranging from cryogenics to aeronautics.
The Moscow Aviation Institute, Moscow State University of Railway Engineering, St.Petersburg State Chemical and Pharmaceutical Academy, St. Petersburg State Institute of Civil Engineering and Architecture, People's Friendship University of Russia, the Volgograd State Medical Academy and the Yaroslavl State Medical Academy participated in the exhibition which is being organised in other parts of the country including Bangalore.
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