The award ceremony for the country’s top educators was recently held at the Moscow Musical Theatre. Anton Sheikin, Assistant Professor in the Department of High Energy and Elementary Particles Physics at St Petersburg University, was a winner in the category for the Teacher/Educator of the Year.

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Mr Sheikin received this award for a series of popular science lectures that he delivered in different cities of Russia: St Petersburg, Moscow, Krasnoyarsk, Voronezh, Syktyvkar, Tambov, Zelenograd and Sochi, and also for popular science presentations on Russian TV.  In addition, he has a website where all of his lectures, along with his popular science and academic papers, can be found. 

‘Of course, when I learned of my victory, it was totally unexpected!  All of the nominees for a Znanie Award are people of great merit, and to compete with them is no easy task,’ Mr Sheikin shared his impressions.  According to him, today’s brisk growth of outreach activities makes it possible to not only give people answers to the questions posed by science but also to tell them about the way in which scientific answers have been obtained.

The award for educational activities was presented to the St Petersburg University physicist by Dmitry Livanov, Rector of the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology and Doctor of Physics and Mathematics.

The award of the Russian Znanie (Knowledge) Society was presented this year for the first time.  It was established to recognise the achievements of Russian educators, including university teachers, lecturers, schoolteachers, and bloggers; companies and the media; and also people and projects from various fields that are involved in educational activities.  This year’s short-list consisted of 103 nominees in 14 categories.

For more than ten years, Anton Sheikin has been engaged in mobile schools for gifted schoolchildren.  Since 2015, he has been teaching at St Petersburg University, and since 2017, he has been giving lectures in popular science.  He has also participated in: Science Slam; Gutenberg’s Kurilka (Smoking Room); the Nauka 0+ Science Festival; the Parsec Conference, which is part of the StarKON Festival; and many other educational events.  Since 2020, he has been giving popular science lectures under the auspices of St Petersburg University at the Physics for All lecture centre.

In addition, Mr Sheikin is the recipient of numerous prizes and awards:  the Dynasty Foundation scholarship (2011-2012); the President of the Russian Federation scholarship for postgraduate students (2015); and the St Petersburg Government Prize (2015).  He is also the principal investigator of a grant from the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (project No 18-31-00169).