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Nadezda Kobzeva (Tomsk, Russia)

Beyond all doubt, Russian higher engineering education becomes competitive among the world engineering education. One of the priorities of the international development of the Russian educational system is the training of the specialists for the other countries. Russia offers a foreign student the possibility of getting a quality higher education in the leading Universities of Russia, whose degrees are recognized all over the world. Foreign students studying in Russia have got an excellent possibility to get not only a high-quality education but also acquaint themselves with rich Russians customs and traditions.

Tomsk polytechnic university (TPU) has the opportunity to study foreign young people, who wish to meet the Russian peers, to learn the Russian tradition, culture, combine with the science of engineering. Tomsk is the Russian city situated in the southeast of the West Siberian plain. Tomsk arose in 1604 as the Russian fortress on the bank of the river Tom. The Tomsk region provides a remarkable combination of rich natural resources, developed science and industry, a highly educated labor force, and old cultural traditions. Tomsk is one of the oldest scientific and higher education centers in Russia. There are 6 higher educational institutes, including 3 universities (State, Polytechnic and Siberian Medical), 12 scientific research institutes, 20 colleges and 3 scientific centers (the Siberian divisions of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Russian Academy of Medical Sciences, and Russian Academy of education).

         Tomsk polytechnic university is the oldest technical university in Russia east of the Urals. Nowadays university has a status of National research Tomsk polytechnic university and occupies the second place among the technical universities in Russia. It has about 240 Programmes from Bachelor to Ph.D. level in Russian and English: Geology and Oil and Gas Industry, Oil and Gas Processing; Computer Science and Engineering; Material Science and Nanotechnologies; Electronics, Optical Engineering; Mechanical Engineering; Electrical Power Engineering; Production of Inorganic Matter; Production of Polymers, Biotechnology; Environment Protection; Economics, Accounting, Management, Public Relations, Advertising; Social and Cultural Service and Tourism, Linguistics. Moreover, the university offers Double Degree Programmes: Technischen Universitat Munchen (Germany), Technischen Universitat Berlin (Germany), Universität des Saarlandes (Germany), Jilin University (China), Heriot-Watt University (UK), etc.

                This paper aims to trace the relationship between concepts: Education and Traditions. How the national tradition and culture of country can help foreign students to learn technical and humanities sciences. So we have next challenges: to learn Russian tradition, which celebrated in Tomsk; to conduct surveys among foreign students, to check their knowledge about Russia and national holidays; to analyze the responses; to draw a conclusion.

The author devised the following questionnaire and asked 40 foreign students to answer the questions. Consequently the author got, for example, the following results:

1) How long you do live in Tomsk? a) over a year 62 %; b) several months 15%; c) over two years 19%; d) over four years 14%.

2) When was TPU established? a) 1986 – 7%; b) 1889 – 36%; c) 1956 – 17%; d) 1896 – 40 %;

3) With whom first-year students have a meeting on the 1st of September? a) Bachelors 0%; b) Rector 4%; c) Institute dean 96%; d) Hostel authorities 5%.

4) Why do students celebrate “Tatyana’s Day”? This holiday means: a) the end of the session 67%; b) the middle of Siberian winter 7%; c) outdoor parties and firework 3%; d) the day of the student’s spirit 23%.

5) Which TPU tradition do you like most of all? a) initiation into students 63%; b) sports contest among university hostels 17%; c) rector reception of A-students 7%; d) festival of students creation 13%;

6) In which TPU contest would you like to participate? a) initiation into students 30%; b) sports contest 20%; c) the day of TPU 27% d) rector reception of A-students 23%.

7) Does university life and studying at TPU change your attitude to Russia? a) yes, surely 89%; b) I don’t think so 14%; c) It’ a very difficult question for me 4%.

Thereby, the answers clearly justify that while studying in TPU foreign students get not only academic knowledge, skills and abilities, but also find out the country and the city where they study. Assuredly, this knowledge helps them understand students’ traditions, make friends and their stay at TPU unforgettable, provides an opportunity to become broad-minded global engineers.