On March 16, 2018 – Asian, Middle Eastern and Russian students of the National Research Nuclear University MEPhI received their Specialist Diplomas after 5- and 6-years of training.
Specialists degrees in “Nuclear Power Stations: Design, Operation, Engineering” was awarded to 99 students from Vietnam, Mongolia and Turkey. Along with them, 74 students from Russia graduated. Among the graduates, 27 future atomic scientists graduated with honors, receiving so-called “Red Diplomas”. Diplomats from Vietnam, Zambia, Jordan, Mongolia and Turkey and Russian officials attended the ceremony.
Students from Mongolia and Turkey became the first generation of nuclear experts, who received diplomas in Russia. Commemorative plaques in their honor were revealed in the International Friendship Hall of the Obninsk branch of MEPhI. Vietnamese students became the second graduating class from the university. In total, 62 students from Vietnam got diplomas, 2 from Mongolia, 74 from Russia and 35 from Turkey.
Zambian diplomats met with 20 Zambian students that currently study nuclear technologies in Russia and were pleased with their academic achievements. The First Secretary of the Embassy of Zambia Simwanza Chingwa said: “It is very important for us to cooperate with Russia in the sphere of nuclear power. I hope that in the near future I will see a commemorative plaque dedicated to the graduation of students from Zambia on the wall of MEPhI.” Richard Vlakhakis, a MEPhI student from Zambia, said: “The educational process is difficult, but we work hard and understand how important this is for our country.”
The Rosatom CEO Alexey Likhachev personally greeted the graduates and wished them “to study their whole lives as they have been taught to study at MEPhI.” He continued: “Now you have a real opportunity to be professionals, because the education you have received is rightfully considered to be one of the best in the world, and nuclear science and industry are fast-developing both in Russia and other countries.” He also noted the symbolism of the graduation location: “Classes took place in the city of Obninsk where world’s first nuclear power plant – the Obninsk NPP – opened in 1954. Let the new generation of nuclear experts carry this winning streak throughout their life, which, I am sure, will be devoted to the development of the global agenda in the field of energy.”
The graduates now have the opportunity to become part of Rosatom’s international nuclear family. For instance, all 35 Turkish specialists who successfully completed their education, will be employed at by Akkuyu Nuklear and will implement the first nuclear power plant project in Turkey (the Mersin province). According to the Akkuyu NPP Recruitment, Training and Development Program, all 256 Turkish students who are currently studying in Russia in the field of nuclear engineering will be employed by the company – provided they successfully complete their studies.
MEPhI is the leading university partner of Rosatom and provides its students with frequent upgrade of educational programs, sophisticated scientific and educational equipment and practicums and internships at Rosatom enterprises. The University programs include BE and BS degrees (4-5 years), Specialist degrees (5-6 years) and ME and MS degrees (2-3 years) in English or Russian. As Mikhail Strikhanov, MEPhI rector put it at the ceremony of awarding the diplomas: “With Rosatom’s help MEPhI has become an international hub for training specialists in the wide array of knowledge, but mainly in the field of nuclear energy and technology. MEPhI is proud to have over 1,500 students from 57 countries on our international campus.”
In total, 51 students from sub-Saharan Africa, including from Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, South Africa and Zambia, study in Russia.