Izhevsk and Croatia: Friendship will Continue

In these days the colleagues from the Croatian partner University – University of Zadar have had a business and a friendly visit to Kalashnikov Izhevsk State Technical University.

Head of Department of Russian Language and Literature of University of Zadar Prof. Rafaela Božic, and Associate Professor and ECTS-Erasmus Coordinator Dr. Sandra Hadžihalilovićare in Izhevsk for the first time, but they try to visit Russiaas often as possible. Needless to say, both Rafaela and Sandra speak Russian perfectly. Prof. Rafaela Božictranslated such classics of Russian fiction, as Andrei Platonov and Evgeniy Zamyatin and is now translating Alexander Pushkin’s poems into the native language...

Izhevsk became one of the cities in September tour of Croatian teachers in Russia. Our guests had already visited St. Petersburg, they were participants of the international conference «Boldino Readings» in Nizhny Novgorod and Museum «Boldino». Our colleagues visited Kalashnikov ISTU in the frameworks of the cooperation agreement signed by our universities a few years ago.

– Our students study in your university, but teachers have not been hereyet, commented her visit Rafaela Božicat the meeting with the University administration. – Students always come back to Zadar and Croatia very happy and inspired, and we know that it is nice here, and we wanted to see it by ourselves.

Dr. Aleksandr Elensky, Vice-Rector for International Relations and Accreditation, Dr. Alexey Ryabchikov, Head of Department of International Education and Cooperation, Sergey Babushkin, Head of Division of International Programs and Academic Mobility and Dr. Ilya Zagoruiko, Head of Department of Scientific and Technical Translation and Intercultural Communication represented our university at the meeting.

Aleksandr Elensky acquainted the guests with the history and contemporary directions of development of Kalashnikov ISTU, focusing at possible new areas of cooperation, including Erasmus+ program coordinated by Sandra Hadžihalilović. As noted by the representatives of the Croatian University, they were pleasantly surprised by the size of our university – before the meeting they made a small tour of the university and campus. University of Zadar, although one of the oldest in Croatia (it was founded in the late XIV century), in its scope, the number of faculties and number of students is much less than ours. Our Croatian colleagues paid special attention to the positions of Kalashnikov ISTUin Russian and international educational rankings – quite high for a regional university, which again extends the possibilities for mutually beneficial partnership.

After the meeting, Rafaela Božic gave a short interview to the press-center of Kalashnikov ISTU.

– Rafaela, beside the fact that you are a teacher, you are also a professional translator of prose, right?

– I don’t know what a professional translator in the sense of a literary textis. Translation of business texts – of course, there are professionals. As for artistic text... a person just likes and does. Fortunately for me, I translated the novel «We» by Zamyatin, the novels «Chevengur» and «Kotlovan» by Platonov, prepared and translated some stories by Zamyatin. As for poetry, I translated some poems by Tyutchev, Fet. And two months ago I started to translate «Ruslan and Lyudmila» by Pushkin. I said about that at the conference in Boldino.

– What is the overall goal of your visit to Russia?

– Of course, we, Russianists, love to come to Russia and try to do it often. We came to Izhevsk because of the cooperation between our universities, which has been lasting for several years. Beside the fact that I wanted to see what pleased our students who come here so, we need to agree on the development of cooperation in the future, not only in Izhevsk. So, I attended «Boldino Readings» for the third time already. And we will represent our Department in Moscow. This year Department of Russian language and Literature of University of Zadar is 60 years old. In our opinion, it is a very important event.

– I think this is also an important event for Russia. But now you, humanitarians, have come to a technical university – although we have Department of Linguistics, but it is non-core for the university...

– Talking about a technical university and the ratio of humanitarians and engineers, I’ll tell you that... Yevgeny Zamyatin, for example, was an engineer. So it is artificial to separate one from the other, and it is a very big advantage when we work together.

– Today you met and talked with colleagues. Do you have any projects?

–Yes, great ideas! We have been always in contact with our colleagues, but when you meet someone «in person», new ideas are generated at once. Your Vice-Rector told us a lot about the university, and new plans and ideas began to appear immediately. Today we’ll also meet with students, we will tell them about Zadar and about our university. Zadar is a beautiful city, rich in history that dates back to Roman times. Today there are new monuments, tourism is being actively developed. There is much to tell and much to show.

– What would you wish our students?

– We strongly wish our students to meet, communicate with each other and cooperate in the future, become friends for life. Croatia and Croats are very interested in cooperation, because Russia, its language, literature, culture have always been interesting for us. And I’m sure the friendship will continue.

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