Russia is one of the very few countries that provide foreign applicants a chance to study for free. The Russian Ministry of Education has a fixed quota for both the undergraduate and graduate students. For example, in 2016/2017 15,000 students were allowed to live and study in Russia for free.
The process of gaining free education in Russia is quite simple, and we will discuss ways to do so.
Study in Russia for Free
1. Complete the Application Process through Rossotrudnichestvo
There is a state agency called Rossotrudnichestvo that deals with applications from international students. Students can sign up to the agency on its official website. Although the process of signing up was quite complicated before, it has been quite simplified since 2016. The complete registration process shall not take more than 10 minutes for an average student. Completing this application process is critical for studying in Russia for free.
Once you have signed up to the website, you can submit a letter of motivation along with the formal application form. The form inquires the student about their education, personal achievements, and the desired field of study. Once you submit the form, your application is added to the general list of requests from your respective country, waiting to be reviewed. A student may typically have to wait for the application review, both from Rossotrudnichestvo and the local education ministry. The applicants who are short-listed are given an interview or test call.
2. If you pass the first round, do the interview and submit additional documents.
Students who are in the list of candidates for test and interview calls shall have to submit other documents. These documents include a doctor’s certificate or a medical certificate that must confirm that there are no medical reasons for not accepting the student. Such a license must consist of test results for HIV. All the documents being submitted must be translated into Russian. These documents are attached as part of an online form. However, students can opt to provide these documents in person to the operator.
The interesting things about Russian education are that you do not select the university before being selected. You choose six universities of your choice once you have passed the test. Moreover, if in case your application is rejected by all the six universities, the Russian Ministry of Education shall provide you a place in another university so that you can study in Russia for free.
Once the registration is successful, the applicant receives an ID that allows them to track their application’s status and information about their admission on the official website, Russia-edu.ru.
3. Prepare for Studying in Russia
Once your enrollment is confirmed, you need to prepare for studying in Russia. Most of the registrations get established in July for the fall semester. Once registration is approved, the information shall be provided to you by a representative of an operator, serving in your country. For some courses, students might be required to sit in additional examinations. For example, students enrolled in Arts and Humanities shall be required to sit in a creative contest. For this purpose, students need to come to Russia on a separate tourist visa. The results of these tests are crucial in deciding whether or not students can be accepted at individual institutions.
Students are informed by individual universities of the accommodation and food expenses if any. Usually, students selected by Rossotrudnichestvo do not have to pay any costs to the university. Furthermore, the official website of the Ministry of Education states that international students can work on-campus during their free time. On-campus includes both the university itself and any linked organization of the university. However, there are individual universities that provide the students with a chance to find contract work or employment.
If the employment or contract work is provided by the university, the student does not need to take the relevant work permit from General Administration for Migration Issues of the Interior Ministry of Russia. However, id the employment is sought directly, then a license shall be required. Permits are only issued to full-time students in state-accredited universities. Another restriction of these permits is that the student can only involve himself in work that is specified by the license. The grant also defines the region where the university is located, and the student is expected to stay within that region for work.
One thing that must be clarified is that such employment may not earn a student a significant amount. As a result, additional work cannot cover a student’s living costs. Usually, living costs for students for whom the university is not providing the accommodation can average to 300 to 400 USD a month. Moreover, the intensive study schedule and the strict homework requirements may leave students with minimal free time to work. It is recommended that students either rely on their savings or the support of their family to ensure all expenses are met. The Ministry of Education urges the students to remain focused on their studies.
Moreover, the Ministry of Science and Higher Education’s website also mentions the government scholarships being provided. According to the method mentioned above, if the student can secure a scholarship, their tuition fee for the complete course of their degree program shall be provided by the government. At the same time, the award also provides a maintenance allowance. This allowance usually averages 22 USD a month. If dormitory accommodation is available at the university selected by the student, the government pays for that too. This is a great way to study in Russia for free. However, the scholarship does not cover any travel costs or living expenses. At the same time, if the students opt for a voluntary health insurance policy, it shall not be covered by the government-funded scholarship.
There is no discrimination made between students from different countries. It must be emphasized that there is no specific quota for each country. The allowance of 15,000 foreign applicants applies to students of all nations and all levels alike. The student must be aware that if they are not residing in a government-sponsored dormitory housing; then they might have to afford nearly 400 USD a month for their private accommodation. Students may form for a foreign firm NOT operating in Russian soil during their period of study without any permit. Permits are only required if the operation of the firm being worked for is in Russia.
I hope that this article on how to study in Russia for free was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Europe Category!