Moscow, June 7, 2012. The Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) has accepted 21 outstanding Russian students from 14 different universities into its interdisciplinary Master's degree program uniting teaching, research and innovation.
For the next 3 years, the students, each holding at least a Bachelor’s degree, will participate in a unique educational program and pursue their passions by researching and collaborating with leading international scholars as well as focusing their activities around entrepreneurship and technology commercialization.
“The main challenge in building this university is finding the right people,” said Skoltech President Edward Crawley. “As I look at this first group of self-motivated and passionate students, I feel that Skoltech is really starting to feel like a university. With the development of our Research Centers and the continued progress in establishing the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, I know these students will have the opportunities necessary to excel.”
Skoltech strives to develop the world’s next generation of brilliant scientists and engineers, who will be based in Russia and serve as role models for future Russian scholars. With the education and experience students gain at Skoltech, they will contribute to improving the quality of life, health and economic stability of the nation.
The first class underwent a rigorous admissions process, designed to assess their academic abilities, leadership qualities, and potential. Students from all over Russia, with academic interests in information technologies and energy science and technology, submitted applications, professor recommendations and descriptions of their successes in academia and research. From this first pool, 41 finalists were chosen to participate in the Selection Weekend on May 11-13.
During this second stage, expert advisers (Founding Faculty Fellows), MIT alumni and Skoltech team senior staff evaluated the students through engineering and design exercises, TOEFL exams and individual interviews. Finally, an Admissions Committee, consisting of Skoltech senior staff and President Crawley, convened and selected the final group of students.
Director of Students Bram Caplan said: “The students are a fabulous group who exceeded our expectations in their technical knowledge and innovative potential. It is apparent that each student desires to apply the knowledge they would gain at Skoltech to solve the pressing problems of our day."
The inaugural student class will attend a 4-week Innovation Workshop at MIT in August to develop camaraderie within the group and introduce them to selected topics in Entrepreneurship and Innovation. Afterward, the students will begin their 3-year Master's program in September with a year abroad at one of 4 leading research universities — Imperial College London (ICL), Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich (ETHZ), Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) or the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) — and undergo a pilot program in entrepreneurship and innovation.
All students participating in the program will receive a fellowship that provides funding for the costs of the program.
Describing why she was excited to become a member of Skoltech’s founding class, Anastasia Uryasheva said: "Judging from my experience at Selection Weekend, Skoltech will be a place where innovation, entrepreneurship, engineering, technology and fun mix into one great thing in the company of hard working, motivated, and result-driven people."
The Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) is a private graduate research university in Skolkovo, Russia, a suburb of Moscow. Established in 2011 in collaboration with MIT, Skoltech will educate coming generations of researchers and entrepreneurs, advance scientific knowledge, and foster technological innovation to address critical issues facing Russia and the world in the new century. The university will be built on the best traditions of Russian and international education and research structures and practices, with a specific focus on entrepreneurship and innovation.
Founded in 1861, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a co-educational privately endowed research university, is dedicated to advancing knowledge and educating students in science, technology, and other areas of scholarship to serve the nation and world. The Institute has more than 1,000 faculty and 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students.