PRECAUTIONS AND MEASURES TAKEN IN RUSSIAN UNIVERSITIES DURING COVID-19 PANDEMIC
The novel coronavirus (renamed as SARS coronavirus 2) scare has gripped the entire world and has affected every walk of life. Various nations have adopted different public health-based strategies to tackle this pandemic ranging from provisioning of quarantine and isolation facilities, putting a hold on travel, to imposing complete lockdown. Each country has made efforts that are suitable for the situation that it is facing. Like other people, the virus is also taking a great toll on the academic, physical and mental well being of the students. The government of Russia has been making necessary arrangements for the students, both national and international, for their stay as well as the continuation of their academic activities. Russia has been a hub of students seeking various professional degrees and a quality academic environment; the country’s universities cater to a number of foreign students. In the coronavirus scare, many of these students could not return to their homes and now the government is taking care of them all.
The students are provided with accommodation in the hostels with food and other basic facilities. The universities in Russia have been following the social distancing guidelines issued by the health ministry and keeping a strict watch over its violation. The students have been provided with sanitizers and given demonstrations on the correct ways to do hand hygiene both with soap and water as well as with alcohol-based hand rub, and strict hygiene practices are being enforced by the administration in the washrooms. The students have been advised to follow strict personal hygiene and avoid social gatherings in any case. The most important part is that since the academic activities are being affected, the universities are providing online assistance to the students. The professors are taking classes via different video calling apps, the materials are being circulated via e-mails and professors via e-mails and live doubt clearing sessions are answering all queries and questions emanating from the students. Since many online journal websites have allowed free downloading; the universities are ensuring proper wireless network connection so that the students can focus on their studies properly. Similarly, online libraries are being made available for the students, so that they can study from their homes or their hostel dormitory rooms. Even submissions are being prioritized via online modes, to complete the courses successfully. The hostel administration of various universities has been making arrangements for proper social distancing for the dormitory residents. Rus Education is also making strong efforts and has been constantly working for the students who went to Russia through their program.
Apart from studies and other academic activities, it is a given fact that the prevailing scenario is taking a heavy toll on their physical and mental health. The universities, in this scenario, are providing mental health care via online as well as physical (only if necessary) means. There are adequate arrangements made for counseling via different clinical psychologists and psychiatrists to help the students manage mental stress. Video conferencing has been made available and the universities are responding to such cases on a priority basis. Proper medications are being made available and the hospitals and ambulances are always kept on standby, in case of any student falling sick. The Vice-Chairman of Rus-education is making sure that all arrangements are in place and is taking stock of the situation on a regular basis through videoconferencing and interacting with the parents, the students and the coordinators. During such interactions, the apprehensions and anxieties of the parents, students, and administrative staff are allayed and practical solutions are provided so that all remain safe and healthy.
The universities are making sure to have contact with the parents of the students as well, to give assurance as well as ensuring proper communication between the wards and their parents/guardian. Rus Education is working with the universities in this regard, especially for the Indian students. From Regular online classes to constant communication with families, to providing psychological support, Rus Education is working tirelessly in this direction in a committed manner. The universities are also providing information about the different measures taken by the Russian Govt. to tackle the pandemic. The Russian Education Ministry is taking care of the universities and the students and making sure that all necessary guidelines are being stringently implemented and followed. The Indian Embassy at Moscow is actively monitoring the situation and is in regular touch with all the Education Consultants and the University authorities. His Excellency, the Ambassador of India to Moscow has also addressed the Indian students and reassured them of all the possible support from the Embassy.
In these times of crisis, the message from Ruseducation to all its students is To Stay where They Are. Be safe. Be careful but Be not Be Fearful.
For corona related queries and updates please contact Rus Education: - +918448987599