Despite the calendar summer in St. Petersburg this year is not making us happy with good weather, but it does not make Polytechnic University depressed: the hot Spanish sun has reached our university. Bright dynamics in the development of international relations with universities and organizations in Spain has been encouraged by launching of SPbPU Information center in Madrid. Since that moment international affairs on the Iberian Peninsula started intensively developing.
‘Thanks to launch of the Information Center in Madrid on April, 19th, we obtained real grounds and opportunities for collaboration. Each international collaboration starts with mutual interest in cooperation between professors and research groups. If there is a progress on speaking in a meaningful dialogue on science and research affairs, then it may contribute to joint research projects, students’ mobility and new educational programs launch. In our background we have strongly developed relations between SPbPU scientists and researchers from the Spanish universities. Representatives of the SPbPU International office joined their efforts to strengthen the agreements achieved by institutes and professors. It resulted in extensive discussion and developing detailed plans for the future”, - mentioned the Vice-Rector for International Relations of SPbPU Dmitry Arseniev.
Great amount of meetings and events held during the summer 2017, fostered cooperation between SPbPU and Spanish universities. Series of working visits have started from the business trip of representatives of SPbPU Institute of Humanities to the University of Granada – one of the oldest Spanish universities. As participants said - the meetings were well organized and served as a good foundation for the further Russian-Spanish cooperation. The visit contributed to promote achievements of a number of international cooperation agreements in the area of academic exchange.
In the period July, 3-5, on the campus of the Polytechnic University of Valencia (UPV) Congress on Numerical Methods in Engineering - CMN 2017 was held. SPbPU was presented by Dr. Olga Antonova - Deputy Director of Institute of Advanced Manufacturing Technologies. Olga Antonova took part in the meeting of the section "Fluid Mechanics" with the report ‘Selección del modelo óptimo para el análisis hidrodinámico de los cojinetes de empuje mediante ANSYS/CFX’. Later she made a series of working visits to the departments of the Polytechnic University of Valencia in order to discuss possible ways of the future cooperation. In particular, Olga had effective negotiations with the Director of International Relations Department of UPV, prof. Javier Orozco Messana. The parties discussed possibilities of cooperation between the Polytechnic University of Valencia and the Institute of Advanced Manufacturing Technologies of SPbPU in terms of academic exchange and prospects for joint development of educational programs.
In the period July, 17-21, representative of the SpbPU International office, Svetlana Kalikina, participated in the Spanish Week, organized by Alliance of 4 Universities (A4U) in the framework of Erasmus + project. The format of the event allowed holding a number of working meetings with the representatives of international offices in partner universities and also with professors of A4U universities and developing a partnership ‘road map’, as well as plans for educational and research activities for the coming year.
Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) and SPbPU do not have yet any agreements on cooperation, although real cooperation between the universities has been actively developing. In June 2017 prof. Alexander Antonov from the Department ‘Computer systems and software technologies’ visited UAB as an invited professor. Alexander Antonov gave a number of lectures on the topic “Development and implementation of FPGA-based devices”. Similarity of educational programs in the relevant institutes of SPbPU and UAB allowed prof. Antonov and prof. Jordi Carrabina from the Department “Microelectronics and Electronic Systems” discussed requirements of joint educational programs, visits of professors, program features and student exchange in the nearest future. Svetlana Kalikina discussed certain ways to implement these long-term plans.
Also during the bilateral negotiations, representatives of the Department of Biologic Sciences expressed their interest to the important for SPbPU field of science “Biomedicine and Life Science”. Professors of UAB were invited to visit Polytech in autumn 2017.
At the University of Pompeu Fabra (UPF) representatives of the Department of Humanities showed their interest to SPbPU Center for Russian as a Foreign Language. Also representatives of the Business and Economics Department were interested in joint research projects and Double and Triple Degree Programs. Students from this Department are coming to Polytech in the spring in 2018 under academic mobility program.
Svetlana Kalikina had two working meetings at the Polytechnic university of Catalonia (UPC) – with prof. Antonio Rodrigez (School of Civil Engineering) and prof. Lucas van Wunnic, Vice-director for Internationalization (High Technical School of Industrial Engineering). They discussed in details the future signing of framework agreement and student exchange agreements that is planned for autumn 2017.
In the period of July, 3-7, also an associate professor of the Department ‘Construction of Unique Buildings and Structures’ and Director of Information Analysis Center Daria Nemova and an assistant lecturer of the Department ‘Construction of Unique Buildings and Structures’ Daria Tarasova have made a working visit to UPC. They discussed future scientific cooperation in the field of Civil Engineering and Architecture with prof. Fidel Franco Gonzalez and agreed on developing ‘road map’, academic exchanges and participation in joint educational projects.
For the following period Madrid became the new center of activity. During two days of the eventful program a lot of presentations and working meetings on the issue of scientific cooperation as well as academic exchange were held at the Carlos III University of Madrid (UC3M) and Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM). UAM and SPbPU discussed signing of the framework agreement on cooperation in autumn 2017. It will be the logic second step after the Letter of Intent signed during the Inauguration of Information Center in Madrid in April 2017.
At the same time a number of important events were held at the University of Granada, which was visited by representatives of SPbPU - Director of SPbPU Center for Russian as a Foreign Language of Higher School of International Educational Programs, Irina Baranova and Head of the short-term international educational programs sector, Tatiana Kovalenko. Irina Baranova participated in the defense of PhD thesis of postgraduate student Maria Yakusheva at the University of Granada. Prof. Baranova was invited as the first opponent. The thesis ‘Descriptive translation of terms in the field of corporate management’ was dedicated to the links between Russian and Spanish languages. It is important to note that such events in the academic community are very significant.
Tatiana Kovalenko participated in the professional development program for representatives of international offices in the framework of Erasmus + project. All the activities of the program were held at the University of Granada. There were discussed such issues as functioning of international offices, development of services for foreign students, incoming and outgoing academic mobility, cooperation of universities in the framework of organizing joint educational programs and projects, etc.
Besides, Tatiana Kovalenko and Irina Baranova had meetings with the Dean of the Translation Studies Faculty and Director of the Center for the Russian Language at the University of Granada, Enrique Cero Hervilla. The parties discussed joint projects in the field of studying and teaching Russian as a foreign language: short-term educational programs during the academic year, internships for teachers and participation in summer schools. Also was discussed the possibility of passing the TOFRFL exam (Test of Russian as a Foreign Language) for Spanish students at SPbPU Center for Russian as a Foreign Language. TOFRFL exam is not available to foreign citizens in each Russian university, while Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University provides this opportunity with issuing the certificate.
A4U – Alliance of 4 leading Spanish universities which includes Autonomous University of Barcelona, Autonomous University of Madrid, Carlos III University of Madrid and University of Pompeu Fabra. Collaboration between SPbPU and A4U started in October 2011 with signing of Agreement on cooperation. Cooperation in the framework of Erasmus+ KA107 project started in 2015.