Tomsk State University was visited by a group of students from Laos studying at RUDN University, Moscow Automobile and Road Construction State Technical University (MADI), Pushkin State Russian Language Institute, and other Moscow universities. At TSU, residents of Laos met with fellow countrymen from different cities, toured the architecture of the city, and visited the campus of the first university in Siberia, then played a friendly football match.
- Because of the coronavirus, Lao students could not go home, so they went on a trip to Russia in the summer, - says Phonekeo Vinavath, a TSU graduate student. - Tomsk was not chosen by chance. Our fellow countrymen who study at Moscow universities know that Tomsk is one of the main student cities in Russia. TSU is the first university in Siberia and it was here that the largest university Lao diaspora was formed. Lao students from the capital decided to come and see this amazing place with their own eyes.
According to the guests, in Tomsk, in addition to the wooden architecture of the city, they were very impressed by the TSU campus - the convenient location of the university buildings. In Moscow, students often spend a lot of time getting from one university building to another. In that sense, TSU students are in much more comfortable conditions. At the same time, Lao residents singled out the University Grove and the new dormitories of the University "Mayak" and "Parus", which are also in close proximity to the university.
It should be noted that TSU is very popular in Laos. Currently, the first university in Siberia has more than 60 graduate students and students from Lao Democratic Republic.- Tomsk State University is a place for training managers for this country.
- In a sense, Laos is a source of “soft power” for us, because, returning home with a TSU diploma, our graduates often occupy high positions in city administrations, ministries, and other institutions - says Artyom Rykun, TSU Vice-Rector for International Affairs. - This influences the formation of a loyal, I would say a friendly attitude towards Russia as a whole. The quality of education provided by TSU is highly valued in Laos, so middle- and upper-class families send their children to study here.
The most popular among them are educational programs related to the management of economic processes or municipal management. Therefore, the majority of Lao undergraduate and graduate students study at the Faculty of Historical and Political Sciences and the Institute of Economics and Management. In addition, the IT direction is in great demand, which also provides an opportunity for a successful managerial career.
Now 65 Laotian citizens are studying at TSU. According to the Times Higher Education international ranking, published in early 2020, TSU has become the most international university in Russia. The experts evaluated the number of international university staff and students, the number of scientific publications co-authored with international scholars, and the university's international reputation.