Each fall since 1992, Mansfield University has sent a faculty member and groups of students to Volgograd State University (Russia).
Volgograd, formerly known as Stalingrad, is a metropolitan area of a million people located eight hundred miles south of Moscow. The city extends almost fifty miles along the banks of the Volga, the largest river in Europe and the most beautiful river in the European part of Russia.
Volgograd State University, established in 1980, enrolls 10,000 students in ten departments at six campuses in Volgograd and the Volgograd region. A growing research institution with many laboratories, the university also houses a center for American Studies (the Americana center) and is encouraging international contacts.
The University’s main campus is a thirty minute bus ride from the business and cultural center of Volgograd. Its residence hall is a ten-minute walk from the classroom buildings.
Since the beginning of our exchange program with Volgograd, dozens of MU students have had the privilege to experiment first hand Russian language and culture.
Students studying in Volgograd spend the fall semester (late August to mid-December) in Russia. They are accompanied by a Mansfield University professor, live in the university student residence hall, and attend classes at the main campus of Volgograd State University.
Additional excursions to St. Petersburg and the Moscow area are available at additional cost. Optional excursions to other areas in the region are also available to students.
The courses offered in Volgograd meet accreditation requirements of Mansfield University and are taught by Russian professors in classes designed exclusively for Mansfield students.
Students take courses in Russian language as well as Russian history, literature, and culture. Placement of students in classes is dependent on their language experience in Russian and can vary from beginning to advanced levels. (Most students on the program have not known any Russian before going to Volgograd.) Students earn fifteen credits from Mansfield University. They can receive letter grades or petition for pass/fail grades.
For information about courses at Volgograd State University visit our course page.
Russian professors in Volgograd have graded Mansfield students according to standards similar to those used by American professors at Mansfield University.
Students pay current costs for on-campus housing at Mansfield. Volgograd State University makes housing arrangements and assigns students to their accommodations. Students have traditionally stayed in the university dormitory.
The Volgograd program is open to all regularly enrolled students at Mansfield University and others who enroll at Mansfield for the fall semester. Applicants must be in good academic standing and must show evidence of maturity, stability, adaptability, self-discipline and strong academic motivation. Generally speaking, students are required to have a minimum cumulative average of 2.5 GPA.
Tuition for the Volgograd program is the same as the regular full-time Mansfield tuition. Housing charges are the same as a double room on the Mansfield campus. Students must also pay for a round trip air transportation (currently about $1200) and passport and visa fees (about $200). Mansfield University provides transportation from Mansfield to the airport of departure in the U.S. (usually New York or Washington) and back to Mansfield. Textbooks are provided in Volgograd. Students must, of course, cover optional personal expenses. See our costs page for detailed information.
The office of Study Abroad has a cost-estimate sheet detailing the overall cost of participation in the Volgograd program.
The standard forms of financial assistance are available through the Financial Aid office. Since students in Volgograd remain registered at Mansfield, financial aid packages continue. The study abroad coordinator works closely with the Financial Aid office to help students obtain funds to cover the additional cost incurred by study abroad. Mansfield students may qualify for a study-abroad scholarship (based on merit and need) of up to $1000.
Students need to carry sufficient health, accident, and personal liability insurance. Costs for students without adequate insurance can be discussed with the coordinator of study abroad.
Students studying abroad should apply online for an International Student Identity Card (ISIC.org).
To gain the many advantages of a study abroad experience, students should consult with their academic advisers well in advance. With careful planning participants in this program not only gain regular Mansfield credit but can usually apply the credits earned abroad to general /education electives, language, and major or minor requirements. Students should check with their advisers about the impact study abroad may have on their progress towards graduation.
Students should review the policies for participation in Mansfield University study abroad programs. All applicants for the Volgograd Exchange program must submit 2 references from professors, a transcript indicating achievement of at least 2.5 cumulative grade point average, and a completed application for this program by March 1 of the year prior to departure.
Other Pennsylvania State System University (SSHE) students should contact the International Office at the home university to determine procedures for participation as a SSHE Visiting Student.
Students who are not enrolled in a Pennsylvania State System University will need to enroll at Mansfield University as a special student. Arrangements for use of financial aid received at the home institution may require some additional steps so students should plan accordingly and apply early.
For more information about Volgograd State University, check www.volsu.ru.
Register with the department of state before departure here.
For general information about Russia look at Russia on the Web.