Made in Kaliningrad. International student community
Made in Kaliningrad. International student community
In 2019 about 300 students from 33 countries have been accepted for studies at Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University. Student geography expands every year: nowadays it goes beyond the CIS and European countries.

Why do prospective students from India, Ecuador, Brazil and China choose to come to Kaliningrad for studies? How are stereotypes about Russians broken? What Russian dish is the most favourite among foreigners?
International activity is one of the key priorities for the University. Export of the Russian education is currently a primary goal and international students are direct participants of that process. The process of attracting applicants from various countries is in progress: today at the University there are 745 international students from 42 countries and this year only we have students from 33 countries enrolled on the first-year. At IKBFU the students cannot only receive first-class education but also gain important skills such as leadership and teamwork.
Today getting a degree at a Russian university is very prestigious
We have collected opinions of students who came for studies to Kaliningrad from Asia, South America and Europe.
Photo by Jacob
Photo by David
Photo by Jacob
Photo by Marion
Photo by Jacob
Photo by Shifaaz
Photo by Leio
Photo by Mike
Photo by Jason
Photo by Sven
Photo by Ed
Photo by Hal
Santos Pereira Noda Gabriel Katsuyuki
Studies medicine at the IKBFU (the course is taught in Russian)
I told my friends in Brazil about Kaliningrad and the University. Some of them have also enrolled at the IKBFU. Kaliningrad is a small piece of Russia in Europe, a beautiful and clean city with a fascinating history.

I like studying at the IKBFU. Biophysics is the subject I'm deeply interested in, though it is very hard to study. We've been studying for only two months, but we are already capable of operating an ECG-machine. My group mates are cool guys too!

It was a pleasant surprise to me to find out that the University's staff and students truly care about international students and never leave us in trouble. The International Office is always here to help too!

I often invite my Russian friends to my place and treat them with dishes of Brazilian and Spanish cuisine. For example, a mixture of rice, beans and meat, or potatoes baked with an egg. Of Russian dishes, I love dumplings and potato pancakes with sour cream. It is so delicious. I really liked sour cream and always have it in the fridge. Sometimes I just mix it with sugar and eat it as a dessert.

Kaliningrad in wintertime makes me feel tired. It is hard to wake up in dark and cold mornings. But I have to attend classes, so I force myself to get up and set off to the university. Though I like Kaliningrad in summertime, it remains light outside for a very long time, while in Brazil the sun rises at 8 am and sets at 5-6 pm.

Before coming to Russia, I only watched the videos that showed good things about the country. I deliberately ignored negative videos, as I consider them useless.

I really like Gusev, a small city where everyone knows each other, with a beautiful temple and clean streets.

In summer, my friends and I organize a camp for children from orphanages. We often come with gifts for children who don't have parents. It is rather strange that in Russia volunteering is considered to be a kind of heroism. In Brazil, it is a common thing.

In the IKBFU I met my wife. She came to Kaliningrad from Yekaterinburg. We got married on August 10th. We got married in a Protestant church; there was a pastor and an hour of preaching. We did not have a host, traditional for Russian weddings. It seems strange to me that the guests, instead of communicating with each other, listen to some person who holds contests and makes unfunny jokes. There was no traditional feast; instead, we held a buffet, dishes for which we prepared ourselves! There were a total of 200 people; my friends came from Brazil, Poland, and America.

I don't know whether I will come back to Brazil. I want my wife to be close to her parents, but I miss my family too.

Aules Egas Anji Lilibet
Medicine student. The major is taught in Russian
A doctor, who received a Russian medical education, will have lots of patients, and a private clinic, probably. After graduation I will be back to my country or will go to London, where my aunt works as a doctor. Russian medical education and technologies are in high demand in my country.

In Kaliningrad, I had to get used to the cold winter and to the snow, so I bought a hat and a warm coat. In summer, on the contrary, it's very hot, unlike in my city. I came from the capital of Ecuador, Quito, which has more than 1.6 million residents. It is close to the equator, thus we have a good climate where it is always warm and comfortable.

You may swim anytime in Ecuador, as opposed to here, where I've only managed to stay in the sea for five minutes due to the cold temperature.

I love the Amber Museum and told my mother a lot about amber. It is so beautiful! She did not hear about it before, but after my emotional stories she said: "Well, bring it to me as a gift." I can't bring it - it's expensive! I'd better bring clothes as a gift. I like it here in Kaliningrad.
Mode Pierre Bernard Jean
Undergoes the preparatory course for international students, upon completing it, will apply to business informatics program at the IKBFU
Kaliningrad is a very dynamic mixture of cultures and architectural styles. With Soviet and German styles co-existing. People here are kind and seem happy.

I'm only getting acquainted with my group mates. It is the first foreign trip for many of them. When not studying I teach French in the local language club.

The most complicated thing for me now is learning the language. It is hard to answer the question: "where do you study?", I should say "Pod-go-to-vi-tel-niy fakultet" ("Preparatory course" in Russian)

My favorite dish is dumplings (pelmeni). I eat it regularly; it is very tasty. Though the stores here offer pretty the same as in France.

Narode Shraddha Ashok
Medicine student. The major is taught in English
I heard lots of opinions about the quality of the Russian education and opportunities it gives. I recommend my friends to study here too. Kaliningrad is a fine place! Before coming here I was told that all Russians are gloomy, but it is not like that at all, people here are always ready to help!

Very few people outside the University speak English. Sometimes things get complicated, for example in stores. Once we bought almost 30 liters of carbonated water as we could not understand what was written on the bottles. We didn't drink the water, as we were looking for still water. Now it is just a funny experience to remember.

Kaliningrad weather is the hardest thing to get used to. My hometown is Mumbai, the City of Light. We do not wear hats and gloves there, and having to buy them was very unusual to me.

Wang Wenjie
The major is Linguistics and Literature. The course is taught in Russian
Everyone is willing to help me, both students and professors. I have to work hard, as I need to translate everything into my mother tongue first, which is extremely time-consuming. I don't have much free time, as I am always studying. I also teach Russian via Skype. Sometimes I visit various interesting places in the city. I recently saw the "Joker" movie and I didn't catch everything that was said. It is surprising, that you don't have English subtitles in Russian movie theaters. All movies in China have it.

The Russian system of education is very different from the Chinese one. In China a professors strictly follows the program and the textbook. In Russia it is different and involves a lot of independent study.

I like the local cuisine. I've already tried borsch, solyanka, and ukha. Everything was very tasty. Though there was a dish, brought along with the borsch, called "salo" as far as I remember. I didn't like it. I also noticed that Russians have a sweet tooth. You drink tea with lemon and add sugar to it! So unusual!

I read about Russia a lot before coming here. On the Internet they say that Russians are cruel, gloomy people that never smile. And that the streets of Russian cities are packed with bears and drunks. I'd been sure that this was the truth until I came here. It turned out that all Russians are kind and generous people, and there are no bears and drunks too.

I wanted to pursue higher education in Russia. And now I study in Kaliningrad, the very beautiful and clean city with a prestigious university. When I graduate I want to come back home and teach Russian in China.
Tayyip Durakly
The major is Political Science. The course is taught in Russian
I came to Kaliningrad two years ago. My hometown is just 100 kilometers far from Istanbul. I like Kaliningrad, it is just as small as my town. I used to think that Russians are very cold emotionally, but when I came here I found out that everyone is willing to help, especially when it comes to learning.

It is hard to study in Russian. I want to become a diplomat when I come home. I study a lot at home, read a lot. The University professors teach us many things, but it is still hard. I don't have much time for rest, but I still visit the gym three times a week as well as the University's swimming pool.

The weather here is similar to what we have at home. Nothing unusual to me. We also never have it colder than -7 C.

Chavez Arias Stiff Vinicio
Costa Rica
The major is History. The course is taught in Russian
I have dreamed of studying in Russia since I was 15. I've always admired the Russian culture and the complexity of the language. I feel very comfortable at the University, my professors help me with everything and my dorm is just near the building I study at.

There is no snow in winter in Kaliningrad and I'm happy about it. However, it is quite cold to me even when it's raining. San-Jose, my hometown is in just about an hour away from sea, it is always sunny and warm there.

I don't eat anything unusual here: pasta, chicken and fish mostly. Everything is just like at home. I once tried this jelly meat of yours – holodets. That was horrible. Also I tried sprats. A friend of mine said that Russians eat sprats with tea. Didn't like it either.
Hurtado Romero Juan Sebastian
The major is Medicine. The course is taught in Russian
The IKBFU is a modern University located in a beautiful city. I learned Russian after eight months in Kaliningrad and now fully able to carry on my studies in it. Russian education is very prestigious. I want to become a doctor in Ecuador or in Spain. Being a doctor means having lots of money and patients.

I miss my mother. It was very hard to get used to living alone in the dormitory. Now I have to cook dishes for myself as well as to iron my clothes. I can't spend money wisely; I just buy everything I see. That's how I got myself a mixer and a clock and I use neither.

I love eating at the University's canteen. The first unusual Russian dish I tried was borsch. I didn't like it at first, but then I just got used to it.
IKBFU: In 2017 and 2018 most of the incoming students were from the European countries such as Germany, France, Italy, Poland, Slovenia and Czech Republic, however, in 2019 there has been a significant increase in the number of students from Asia. This year for the first time we welcomed a group of 7 students from Busan University of Foreign Studies in the Republic of Korea, 5 students from Qiqihar University in China as well as a student from Kobe City University of Foreign Studies in Japan. By tradition, 2 students from Wenzao Ursuline University of Languages (Taiwan) have come to IKBFU for studies within the trilateral Master programme in International Business "BRIDGE" (MA degree in Management)"
At IKBFU there is a whole team of specialists who support the internationals and help to integrate into academic life and become active members of extracurricular initiatives.
At the beginning of each semester the University hosts an Orientation Week for newcomers. The students get to know the University campuses, the city and those international students who have already spent some time at IKBFU as well as the staff members of the International Office and International Students and Protocol Office. What is more, the University Visa Centre staff explains to the new students all the details of the Migration Regulations. The Orientation Week is an interactive event where the students gain basic knowledge necessary for living in Russia.
What kind of help can the students get?
Visa Support
Registration and Visa extension support by the University Visa Centre.
Timely provision of information
Maintaining contact between University departments and international students by International Students and Protocol Office.
Support with health issues
Consulting the students about medical insurance policies, accompanying the students to hospitals and doctor appointments.
Language support
Assigning a Russian-speaking local student (buddy).
Extracurricular activities
Participation in various extracurricular activities such as University events or holding language clubs (teaching the mother tongue of an international student to the IKBFU students), etc.
Life in Kaliningrad
Providing support with academic activity organization as well as information on the University regulations and organization of the study process and life in Kaliningrad in general.
Documents preparation
Support in preparation of official documents.

"Indian Extravaganza-2019"
Students in cooperation with the IKBFU International Office run events which help students to feel at home. For example, students from India who study at the IKBFU Medical Institute celebrate a bright event called "Indian Extravaganza-2019" which includes dance performances, songs, fashion shows and final marvelous flashmob show.
Today 120 Indian students receive education within the "General Medicine" higher educational programme and 46 of them are first-year students. Most came from the State of Maharashtra with support of the "АК Educational Consultants" educational agency.
Photo by Jacob
Photo by Ed
Photo by Leio
Photo by Marion
Photo by Jacob
Photo by Shifaaz
Photo by Mike
Photo by Jason
Photo by Sven
Photo by Jacob
Photo by David
Photo by Hal
In the language of Pushkin
International students come to Russia not only for receiving prestigious education but learning the Russian language. They strive to learn more about Russian customs, patterns of locals' mindset and Russian psyche.

International students in cooperation with IKBFU Media Centre have created a project called "Accents" about Russian culture from the International students' perspective.
How to learn the language and enroll?
IKBFU preparatory course

— is an educational programme on the Russian language learning and preparation for entrance exams. The programme was specially designed for international applicants who wish to study in Russia.

What's provided?

— intensive Russian language courses, study of the chosen courses and disciplines, preparation for entrance exams at Russian universities (you can apply to IKBFU or other universities of Russia) and thrilling campus life.

— every international student gets assistance of a buddy who will be around to help in a new environment. Your buddy will meet you upon arrival, help to solve possible problems and show you the city. With your buddy you will more easily get acquainted with University life.

Graduates, who successfully pass their finals will receive certificates confirming their Russian language proficiency which is sufficient to continue education at the University. Optionally, preparation department graduates are offered to take a Test of Russian as a Foreign Language and obtain an international certificate of the Russian language expertise.
Feel free to contact the IKBFU Admissions Office about the preparatory course:

The IKBFU international students' countries
Costa Rica
South Korea
Important contacts
14, A.Nevskogo str., Kaliningrad
236016 Russia
International Office
+7 (4012) 313-399 (09:00 – 18:00 (UTC+2) MSK-1)

Admissions Office
+7 (4012) 595-596, +7 (4012) 466-422 (09:00 – 18:00 (UTC+2) MSK-1)

Centre for Social and Economic Students Support
+7 (4012) 595-595 доб.7556 (09:00 – 18:00 (UTC+2) MSK-1)

Career Centre (09:00 – 18:00 (UTC+2) MSK-1)
Text and layout: Maria Masalskaya
Design: Aleksandr Skachko
Photos: Aleksandr Podgorchuk and IKBFU