University: A Fresh Start

St Petersburg University is the oldest university in Russia, an actively developing, world-class centre of research and education. The recent history of the University has seen a number of important events that have determined its future.

In this section, you will find information on how these new developments have helped the University to constantly evolve, to develop its facilities and its infrastructure, to improve the quality of its education and to maintain its high standing in the academic community and with leading employers, both in Russia and abroad.  

In 2010, as part of an effort to reform the structure of the University and its system of management, temporary posts of vice-rectors for the areas of study were established. Their task was to unite the University’s fragmented resources (premises, equipment, library and information resources, food services, etc.) and organise them so that they could be accessed and used by all students.

Who is more important in today’s society, a central heating engineer or a multi-skilled manager?  A dental prosthetist or a primary care physician?  What sort of professionals should the University be training, ones who are highly specialised or ones who, on the contrary, are well-rounded?  Marina Lavrikova, Senior Vice-Rector for Academic Activities and Teaching Methods, speaks about the importance of developing interdisciplinary academic programmes.

A diligent St Petersburg University student can get up to speed on any changes in his/her tomorrow's schedule the night before the next school day, and a disorganised student can look up today’s classes in the morning, while hurrying to the bus stop. The online timetable is accessible to everyone now, even on a tablet or a smartphone.

Imagine an impossible situation: in one part of the city (for example, on Vasilievsky Island), the green traffic light means 'Go!' and the red light means 'Stop!', while in another part of the same city (say, in the Petrodvortsovy District), yellow means 'Go!' and green is 'Stop!' (and red means 'ask the traffic officer').

Imagine how a student in Japanese studies was impressed by visiting Osaka in April-May 2005: a graduate-to-be first realised that she could speak Japanese! Unfortunately, she had had no chance to practice Japanese with native-speakers so far. That was the case ten years ago.