By Ashley Rollins
Wearing BYU sweatshirts and toting BYU bags, educators from Russia visited BYU Tuesday, Oct. 23 as part of a professional development program.
The group consisted of headmasters and principals from private and public schools in Russia.
“This is the highlight of our visit,” said Madina Bikboulatova, director for the Center for Citizen Initiatives in Dubna, Russia.
At BYU the group visited departments and talked to professors and students, she said.
“It was especially very interesting with Russian-speaking students to learn from them how they study here and what kind of courses they take,” Bikboulatova said.
These educators will be touring Utah for nearly a month and will receive training in more than eight different schools, including Utah Valley State College and the University of Utah, according to a news release.
“We”re impressed by the variety of departments and variety of services this university provides,” Bikboulatova said.
She said she was particularly impressed with how well the labs at BYU were equipped.
The touring group consists of education administrators learning business management, Bikboulatova said.
“They are here to learn how business is organized in the U.S. because there are many things to learn from Americans in this field of management,” she said.
Galena Lapinskene, principal of the Resource-Center School Company in Nakhodka, Russia, commented on her impressions of BYU students.
“You guys are very well educated, and you have great possibilities to receive education,” she said.
The visit will help the group learn a lot about America and see the culture, organization and education system, Lapinskene said.
The Salt Lake City Rotary Club hosted the delegation.
Club members will open their homes to the travelers and provide transportation to and from the training.
“Our host families find that they benefit from the experience as much as their Russian visitors,” said Floyd Hatch, this year”s program chair.
Bikboulatova said she has been to the United States many times with different groups. The things the group learns here will help generate ideas back in Russia, she said.
The program is made possible through the Productivity Enhancement Program, funded by the U.S. State Department and run by the Center for Citizen Initiatives, according to a news release.