The Higher School of Economics boasts several dozen dance studios. One of the oldest is the Sona Hovsepyan Dance Company, which has been operating at HSE since 2007. Correspondents for HSE News visited a modern jazz dance class at the studio, and heard first hand from students about how they manage to combine hobbies with their studies, and what future doing dance opens up for them.
In early September, the HSE held a series of tours in English prepared by cultural studies students as part of an adaptation programme for international students. The preparation of the tours was led by the Office for Internationalisation. The programme’s main purpose is to get foreign students and staff involved in the social and creative life of the university, and to introduce them to the city’s landmarks.
The 24th HSE Open Tourist Rally has taken place in the Moscow region. It attracted students from different university campuses, as well as graduates with families, doctoral students, lecturers, and HSE friends from other Moscow universities.
Alessandra Marabini and Francesca Di Furia are Italian exchange students living in Nizhny Novgorod. They are from University of Bergamo and have come to HSE on an exchange semester to study Economics and Russian Language. Both of them have been to Russia before so they are not fazed by the unfamiliar things they see going on around them. Nevertheless, as they tell us below, something new and surprising seems to happen to them everyday. The things that struck them most during their month in Nizhny Novgorod are public transport and the old houses.
The Student Initiative Support Centre and the HSE Faculty of Humanities are jointly organising free guided tours around Moscow. The tours are designed by final year students. Most tours are in Russian but the organizers are ready to schedule additional English-language tours for international students.
On September 26 and 27, 2015, the traditional HSE Open Tourist Rally will be held. Students and staff with families from all HSE campuses, as well as friends of HSE from other Moscow universities, will be able to take part.
Russian students and teachers were not the only ones to actively participate in HSE Day on September 9; many foreigners who study or work at the university took part as well. Numerous activities enriching the celebration could be enjoyed without any knowledge of Russian — for example, Speed Dating, Dance Battle, and a variety of sporting events. However, some sites during the festival had a special English-language programme.
Xenia Trotzky is an HSE international student who came from Austria to study management and explore Russia. Her grandfather was born in Voronezh but left Russia during the Revolution of 1917, fighting for the White Army. ‘I hope people in Europe – including my friends – would one day stop believing all the stereotypes about Russia and would stop seeing Russia as a dangerous and retrograde country. Concerning all the big cities I’ve visited in Europe, Moscow is definitely the safest of them.’
In July, students from the HSE Extreme Sports Club planted the university’s flag at the top of Mount Elbrus, one of the world’s highest peaks. Garry Rutberg, one of the club’s leaders, and Alexandra Oleinikova, an HSE alumna and the club’s guide, tell us about the complicated nature of the mountain, ways of fighting hypoxia, and what it’s like to walk amongst the clouds.
Antti Viktor Rauhala is from Finland. He came to HSE this January as an exchange student. As a politics student who has been studying Russian politics in London at UCL, he has found it refreshing to get a 'Russian perspective' on the current political situation. With his friend Christopher he set on a journey through Russia and Kyrgyzstan.