KFU hosted one of the biggest groups of diplomatic dignitaries in its history on 14th April.
Ambassadors of Argentina, Costa Rica, Cuba, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, El Salvador, Ecuador, Colombia, and Dominican Republic were present. They were joined by employees of the Institute of Latin America and Russian diplomats who are in charge of the Latin American region and Russian National Committee for Cooperation with Latin American Countries (NCCLAC). Currently, KFU employs 8 researchers and teaches 110 students from that region.
Yesterday and today, the guests visited labs, institutes, and museums of Kazan University. Today, the Rector greeted them with a presentation. In particular, he said, “You have got acquainted with the investment potential of our Republic. I want to emphasize that our University is developing in accordance with the Scientific and Technological Development Strategy of Russia. As we all understand, education and science take care of professional training, new research, direct contributions to local economies, and mutual help with countries that are our partners.”
He was followed by Vice-Rector for Research Danis Nurgaliev, Vice-Rector for Biomedicine Andrey Kiyasov, and Director of the Institute of Physics Sergey Nikitin.
Ambassador of Cuba Gerardo Penalver Portal responded, “You have 16 Cuban students, and I have had a chance to speak with them. They are all fond of studying here; they feel safe and assured because they have educators’ care and support and can express their talent in research. It’s especially important that your teaching methods include both theory and practice and that students acquire real skills – an approach that we all should more actively follow in our countries.”
Each of the ambassadors expressed gratitude for the warm welcome. Most of them are interested in developing links in petroleum industry – such desire was voiced by diplomats from Cuba, Panama, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela, and Ecuador. On the other hand, Ambassador of Panama Miguel Lecaro Barcenas stressed the importance of humanities, especially Russian and Spanish languages. Ambassador of Argentina Ricardo Ernesto Lagorio put forth the idea to pronounce 13th April the Day of Latin America at KFU, which was eagerly supported by Rector Gafurov. He promised to share that idea with other local universities in his capacity as the Chairman of the Council of Rectors of Tatarstan. As Dr. Gafurov mentioned, it’s also possible that KFU will soon launch subject programs in the Spanish language, both in natural sciences and humanities.
General Director of NCCLAC Tatyana Mashkova also had a number of suggestions, “Some of the ambassadors have already expressed their interest, but I want to name a few more topics where you can cooperate. Those are robotics, IT, and communications; for example, they are well developed in Cuba, Costa Rica, and a number of Latin American countries – there are qualified programmers there who will be interested to cooperate. There is also astronomy; you have a strong astronomy school, and Chile possesses one of the world’s best observatories ready to cooperate with Russia. There is also a very capable engineering school of the University of Santiago – I am sure they will be ready to visit you and host your interns there. There are many other areas as well.”
The diplomats agreed to strengthen academic exchange with KFU and to recommend the University as a business partner in their respective communities.
Later in the day, a dinner was arranged for the delegation. Those who were interested in more detailed negotiations proceeded to institutes and laboratories to speak with employees.