President Medvedev visited Russian language classes and looked over the book collection in the university’s library.
Later, Mr Medvedev met with teachers and students from the Dalian University of Foreign Languages.
Founded in 1964, the university currently teaches English, Japanese, Russian, German, French, Korean, Arabic, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, and Chinese. More than 20,000 students study at the university, including 900 foreign students, of whom more than 300 are from Russia.
In March 2007, the Chinese Education Ministry and Russia’s Federal Education Agency established the Russian-Chinese Student Exchange Centre. It has the status of educational establishment training top-level specialists, and scientific research centre on international cooperation in the area of educational standards for the twenty-first century.
The university currently has around 500 students specialising in Russian, and a teaching staff of 20 people. In 1986, the Dalian University of Foreign Languages obtained the right to offer Masters courses in Russian language. The university trains not just Russian language specialists but also Russian language teachers.
The university’s Russian language department has signed 15 partnership agreements with Russian research centres and is actively developing its ties with universities in Moscow, St Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Vladivostok, Chita, Irkutsk, Komsomolsk-on-Amur, Volgograd, and Belgorod. Over the last three years, the university has received more than 1,000 Russian students studying Chinese.
In October 2010, with the participation of the Russian World Foundation, a Russian Language Centre was opened at the university. During the Russian Language Year in China in 2009, the university hosted the Russian-Chinese forum of university rectors, an international research symposium, and a Russian language competition for students from all around China.
President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev: Ladies and gentlemen,
It is a great pleasure to be here with you. For 40 years now the Dalian University of Foreign Languages has earned a reputation for producing specialists in various languages, including Russian, which is especially pleasing to see. People come from all around China to study here, and later, they come to our country to study too. I therefore hope to see many of them soon in the Russian Federation.
Looking around the campus just now I was very impressed by what I saw and by the conditions the university offers for studying various foreign languages. Of course, it made me very happy to learn that Ms Sun Yuhua once studied at the university from which I graduated – Leningrad State University. This means that we have a common alma mater, and common ideas on the learning process.
It is very important that we have begun paying particular attention of late to learning each other’s languages. Last year, Russian Language Year took place in China, and this year, Chinese Language Year is taking place in Russia. There is great interest in learning both languages. Thousands of people, young and not so young, are learning these languages, and in fact, Chinese has become one of the most popular foreign languages to learn in Russia today. And so there is good reason to hope that the efforts and attention we have been putting into language learning of late, the efforts the leaders of both countries have made, will indeed produce results.
Your university offers excellent conditions for studying Russian, with the Russian Language Centre, and for studying other languages too. I am sure that all of the students, undergraduate and post-graduate, here today will find demand for their skills later, working here at home, and heading abroad too. We look forward to seeing you in Russia too, of course, so as to further develop the partnership between our two countries. This requires constant bilateral exchanges, student exchanges, internships. This is all part of student life, and I know it from my own experience, as I spent quite some time teaching in a university. And so I wish all of you here, students and teachers, much success in your study of Russian and other languages.