The conference on strategies for attracting, admitting, and adapting international students was the final event of the joint continuing education course between SPbPU and RUDN
On October 27, Polytechnic University hosted a scientific and practical conference with international participation titled «International Students in RF Higher Education Institutions: Strategies of Attraction, Admission, and Adaptation». The conference was the final event of the comprehensive advanced training program in the field of international activities «Strategy and Tactics of Promoting Educational Programs and Services in International Academic Markets». The course which lasted for 8 days was organized jointly by SPbPU and Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia (RUDN). More than 80 participants from 10 Russian universities listened to the lectures of the leading experts from SPbPU and RUDN, and in the final, they presented their projects on relevant topics.
The final chord of the intensive advanced training course was the scientific and practical conference with international participation, to which, despite the coronavirus pandemic, friends and partners from other countries were able to join. A rich program consisted of a plenary session and thematic sections: «Modern mechanisms of university promotion and recruitment of international students», «Current problems of admission and stay of international students in high school» and «Summer school as a tool to attract international students to the university», where the participants could get acquainted with the unique experience of leading experts in the methods of promotion of the university and recruitment, features of admission and adaptation of international students, volunteer activities, international summer and winter schools.
The plenary session was opened by Professor Dmitry ARSENIEV, Vice-Rector for International Affairs of SPbPU. «Our conference today is quite unusual. First, it is the final event of the professional development program that SPbPU and RUDN have implemented together. Secondly, we chose a rather narrowly focused topic: the problems of attracting and accepting foreign students. In contrast to events with broader topics, we have an opportunity to focus on specific tasks and offer specific solutions for them,» said Dmitriy ARSENIEV.
Dmitry ARSENIEV expressed his sincere gratitude to Larisa I. EFREMOVA, Vice-rector for International Affairs at RUDN, and to the entire team of teachers and experts who organized the events, as well as warmly thanked colleagues from committees and foundations for their comprehensive support. The «International Students in RF Institutions of Higher Education: Strategies of Attraction, Admission and Adaptation» conference was held under the auspices of the St. Petersburg Committee for Science and Higher Education, St. Petersburg Foundation for Support of Scientific, Technological and Innovative Activities, and Association of vice-rectors for International Relations of St. Petersburg and North-West Higher Education Institutions.
In a return greeting, Larisa EFREMOVA, Vice-Rector for International Affairs of RUDN thanked Polytechnic University for its productive joint work. «Even though we represent different universities and are located in different cities, we did many joint cases and showed individual projects. This conference is the penultimate one within the framework of the Federal Education Export Project, which is now incorporated into many national projects. Undoubtedly, in today’s realities it is necessary to unite resources of both partner universities and countries and organize quality education in the period of the pandemic,» Larisa EFREMOVA said.
On behalf of the Committee on Science and Higher Education, the audience was addressed by
Director of the St. Petersburg Science Foundation, Project Manager Yuri SNISARENKO, director of St. Petersburg Scientific Foundation and head of STUDYINSPB project, addressed the audience on behalf of the Committee on Science and Higher School: «For the city, the theme of internationalization of higher education is an extremely important area of relevance to the economic and social development, science and education. It is very important for us that St. Petersburg be recognizable abroad as a leading center of science and higher education. A special role here belongs to universities».
Participants of the plenary session presented reports on relevant topics. RUDN Vice-Rector for International Affairs Larisa EFREMOVA gave an overview of the situation with the education of international students in Russian universities and spoke about the results of the latest analytical studies and surveys. A separate part of the report was devoted to the research and analysis of national internationalization strategies in different countries. Yuri SNISARENKO, Director of St. Petersburg Scientific Foundation, made a report on the «Main trends of international academic mobility in St. Petersburg». Vice-rector for International Activities of SPSETU LETI Anastasia MININA presented a paper on «Internationalization Policy in the Context of Environment Transformation», telling about one of LETI’s projects to involve students in the transformation of the university campus space. Maria VRUBLEVSKAYA, Head of Strategic Planning Department at SPbPU, presented the key benchmarks of the Priority 2030 project in the context of the results and outcomes of Project 5-100. Avbakar NUZALOV, General Director of RACUS, described the situation in the educational market from the perspective of Russian and foreign recruiting companies. Victor KRASNOSHCHEKOV, director of the Higher School of International Educational Programs at SPbPU, made a speech on «Comprehensive pedagogical adaptation of foreign students». Dmitry ROGOZIN, Director General of OOO Bridge of Friendship, presented the experience of organizing networking to ensure the preparation of foreign students for professional activities.
After the plenary session, the thematic sessions began. The program opened with the discussion platform «Modern Mechanisms of University Promotion and International Student Recruitment». «Together with our colleagues, we will consider actual advertisement and PR activities, which provide full-scale promotion of the university on the foreign market and make it attractive for potential international applicants,» commented the session moderator, director of the Center for International Recruitment and Communications of SPbPU Maria BOCHAROVA. The speakers presented both specific cases and global overviews of the current situation.
The next panel was dedicated to «Current Problems of International Student Admission and Stay at Higher Education Institutions.» «On the agenda, we and our colleagues plan to address the issues of international students staying at Russian universities, including specifics of admission during the pandemic, specifics of adaptation, involvement and integration of international students into the university life, creation of student communities and volunteer programs,» said the session moderator, Associate Vice-Rector for International Affairs of SPbPU Pavel NEDELKO.
The conference ended with the discussion platform on «Summer school as a tool to attract international students to the university.» «Summer and winter schools are one of the world trends in the development of international educational programs as they are a universal tool not only for educational marketing of the university that allows attracting international students but also contributes to the internationalization of the university and its sustainable development,» noted the session moderator, Head of International Educational Programs and Academic Mobility at SPbPU Olga EMELYANOVA. «SPbPU is a leader among Russian universities both in the number of students of summer and winter schools and the number of students studying at the university. We will consider the best practices of organizing and conducting summer schools as well as the peculiarities of work in different world markets during the discussion platform.»
«We thank all the speakers for their interesting presentations and all the participants for their involvement and active work. Thank you for being with us all these 8 days — some of them in a face-to-face format, some remotely. As a result of the discussions at our conference, recommendations will be developed, best practices and cases will be identified that can be scaled in Russia and implemented in other universities, thus contributing to the export of Russian education, attracting foreign students, and increasing the attractiveness of our country in the global educational market,» said Ekaterina Belyaevskaya, Head of the International University Cooperation Department at SPbPU.
Prepared by the SPbPU International Office