In recent years, Rutgers has expanded its faculty and educational exchanges with Russian universities. Between 2004 and 2006, the State Department’s Rutgers University-Kazan State University Freedom Support Educational Partnership Initiative funded faculty and advanced graduate student exchanges between the two universities in order to develop curriculum.
Several faculty at the School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) are scholars of Russian history, politics, and culture. Ziva Galili (History) researches the social and political history of Russia in the 20th Century, and has written about the Mensheviks, as well as Zionism in Soviet Russia of the 1920s. Jochen Hellbeck (History) recently wrote Revolution on My Mind, which explores personal diaries written in the Soviet Union under Stalin. He is currently working on a cultural history of the battle of Stalingrad and a documentary on intimate communism. Edyta Bojanowska (Department of Germanic, Russian, and East European Languages and Literatures) focuses on 19th Century Russian literature and journalism.
The Program in Russian and East European Languages and Literatures offers a major and several minor programs. Program director, Gerald Pirog, with several other colleagues, was the initiator of a summer six-week intensive course of study in St. Petersburg. The Rutgers in Russia program provides students with an opportunity to develop their language skills in Russian, and to use the city as a platform for learning about the literature, history, art, politics, and culture of St. Petersburg, one of Russia’s two major urban centers. The main component of the program is 120 academic hours of rigorous language instruction at St. Petersburg State University, located in the stunning and historical building of the “blue” Smolny. Svetlana McCoy-Rusanova, (Russian and East European Languages and Literatures), Jochen Hellbeck (History), and Emily Van Buskirk (Russian and East European Languages and Literatures) worked on the program during the summer of 2011.
Historically, the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences (SEBS) has participated in cooperative research and learning with Russia. A few examples include joint research projects between the Pinelands Research Center and the Bach Institute of Biochemistry of the Russian Academy of Sciences; hydrometeorology research in Valdai, Russia by the Center for Environmental Prediction of the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences (IMCS); and Russian students’ participation in the Rutgers Professional Golf Turf Management School.