By Peter Tase
On December 16th, will be commemorated the 70th anniversary of Baku Slavic University (Azerbaijan), one of the top and prestigious public universities in Europe and Asia.
Baku Slavic University (BSU) is one of the leading public higher education institutions of Azerbaijan; it was created by the Decree of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan Heydar A. Aliyev on June 13th, 2000 based on the education tradition established by the former Azerbaijan Pedagogical Institute of the Russian Language and Literature (APIRLL) named after M. F. Akhundov.
During the Soviet Union period, by Order l313 on February 2nd, 1946, the Council of People’s Commissars of USSR and the Council of Ministers of Azerbaijan SSR founded on May 15th (1946) by a unanimous decision the Azerbaijan State Teacher Training Institute named after M. F. Akhundov. During the first academic year there were admitted 108 students to the institute and there were 28 members of academic staff.
In 1972, upon the initiative of the leader of the Republic of Azerbaijan, Heydar A. Aliyev and by a presidential decree 362 of the Government of Azerbaijan signed on November 2nd, 1972, the existing Azerbaijan Pedagogical (Educational) Institute of the Russian Language and Literature was re-established based on the foundation of Azerbaijan Pedagogical (Educational) Institute of Languages named after M. F. Akhundov.
In 2000, a significant event occurred in the political life and university education of the Republic of Azerbaijan. According to the decree signed by the President of Azerbaijan Heydar Aliyev on June 13th, 2000, Baku Slavic University was established on the basis of Azerbaijan Pedagogical (Educational) Institute of the Russian Language and Literature named after M. F. Akhundov. Based on its heritage and admired profile, BSU is a unique higher educational institution, its mission is to create exceptional professionals in a variety of unique areas of study for the students of Azerbaijan and those coming from other countries in the Caspian region.
Over the years, a strategic program and visionary reforms have been prepared and implemented; the educational policy, curriculum development, educational logistics, text book supplies and all technical support of the university have been renovated; Baku Slavic University (BSU) has become one of the leading higher educational institutions of the country and of Europe.
Today Baku Slavic University is a unique educational and cultural institution of advanced learning tradition that studies in depth the spiritual values of Slavic nations and peoples. The University continues to be a leading institution on in-depth research conducted about Russia and other Slavic Languages, Literatures and Cultures; it is led by highly qualified university professors, academic administrators and is equipped by a cutting edge information technology on campus.
According to the Chancellor of Baku Slavic University, Prof. Dr. Nurlana Aliyeva: “the university offers undergraduate academic programs and graduate studies such as Master’s Degrees in linguistics, philology, area studies, Journalism, International Relations and the Enlightenment. Baku Slavic University has a dean in charge of foreign students, a Department of academic advancement as well as a summer-school.” During the recent years BSU has constantly changed its role and mission, from being a usual educational institution it has become into a regional scientific centre of Slavic philology and Slavic culture.
Today 34 academic department chairs are functioning at Baku Slavic University. The academic staffs of the university consist of: 50 Doctors of Sciences, 200 Doctor of Sciences candidates, many assistant and associate professors, full professors, and more than 200 senior instructors and instructors.
Particular emphasis is placed on the development of new courses’ syllabus, textbooks as well as dictionaries, including academic reference volumes on every area of study; many specialized referenced monographs, curricula and systematic recommendations fulfil the requirements of having an admirable advanced education system at BSU.
In 2000, was established the title of Honorary Doctor of Baku Slavic University in its bylaws. Thanks to the Decision of the Academic Council of BSU many well known heads of State, social and political figures who have special merits in strengthening friendship and collaboration between countries and people, in further developing research in science, education, and culture are awarded with this honorary title. The title of Honorary Doctor of Baku Slavic University has been conferred to: President of the Russian Federation Vladimir V. Putin; the Patriarch of Moscow and Entire Russia Alexei II; President of the Republic of Greece (1995-2005) C. Stephanopulos; President of the Republic of Bulgaria (2002-2012) Georgi Parvanov; former President of the Republic of Bulgaria (1990-1997) Zhelyu Zhelev; President of the Ukraine (2004-2010) Viktor Yushchenko; Chairman of the Federal Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation S. M. Mironov; Speaker of the Parliament of the Ukraine (2000-2002) V.S. Piyush; President of the Republic of Poland (2005-2010) Lech Kaczynski; President of the Republic of Belorussia Alexander Lukashenko; Former President of the Republic of Greece (2005-2015) Karolos Papoulias.
BSU has established multilateral cooperation projects and agreements with higher education institutions in a number of foreign countries. The international relations of the University are regulated by bilateral agreements that are set forth with prestigious institutes of higher education, scientific and public organizations of Russia, Ukraine, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Poland, Greece, and other countries.
Some of these dynamic projects in BSU are: “The Centre of Russian Education and Culture” (Moscow auditorium); the Ukrainian educational and cultural centre; the centre of contemporary Greek language and culture; the centre of Bulgarian language and culture; the Polish language and cultural centre; the centre of Turkish studies; the Czech Republic and Belorussian centers; the French and German centres. Moreover BSU is home of the Azerbaijani Multiculturalism Studies program where an in-depth study of Multiculturalism in Azerbaijan has been taking place during the last decade in cooperation with the Baku International Multiculturalism Centre (under the auspices of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Honourable Mr. Ilham Aliyev).
According to BSU Prof. Ulviiya Abbasova: “student life at BSU is also interesting and meaningful on campus, our university offers academic opportunities and services including renovated top level assembly hall, conference hall and renewed overall infrastructure, a main library, and sports training facilities. Students become members of independent organizations, scientific societies and sport clubs. Over the years, BSU teams of athletes, especially the ones in volleyball, handball, and basketball are selected as the best national teams, on many sports competitions, or the so called ‘Spartakiada’ or ‘Universiada’.”