Final examinations for the fall semester took place on December 13-17. The students in the English language program also took their threshold examinations during this week.
On Friday, November 5, RACU's Board of Trustees held their fall meeting in Moscow. In addition to receiving updates on the university's academic program, the Trustees approved the annual university budget and agreed to rotate locations for future meetings of the Board between Russia and the United States. It was agreed that in the future the fall meetings of the Board would be held in the States and the spring meeting in Moscow. It was also agreed to explore the possibility of using video-conferencing for future Trustee meetings. This Board meeting was also the first in which a representative of RACU's Student Council was asked to make a presentation.
RACU's spring registration took place on November 29-30. Students
signed up for 39 courses, 9 of which were new; the spring program will
involve 34 faculty, 8 of these professors are new to our university.
This fall RACU is privileged to have a number of visiting North American
faculty in Moscow. Peter Wozniuk, a businessman from Iowa with extensive
experience in international commerce, is teaching two courses in our business
program; this is Pete's second teaching experience at RACU. Professor
Lugene Schemper, a theologian and librarian from Calvin Thelogical Seminary
(Grand Rapids, Michigan), is teaching courses in theology and ethics,
while Professor Carla Schemper, who has extensive college teaching and
counseling experience, is offering courses for RACU's social work students.
The Schempers have been accompanied to Moscow by their two high school-age
children, Mark and Anna.
A delegation of three professors from Lee University (Cleveland,
Tennessee) visited RACU's campus and have begun discussions with the Moscow
staff concerning exchange programs for their students. Lee University
is one of RACU's eleven U.S. partner colleges and universities.
The facility search process is continuing and several school buildings
are currently being examined as possible sites for RACU's growing program.
The goal is to lease or purchase a facility which will house the university's
program for at least the next five-ten years of its development.
32 freshmen were accepted into the university and began their
classes on August 30th; 15 are business majors and 17 are social work
majors. More than half of the new first-year students are enrolled in
advanced English language classes.
37 second-, third- and fourth-year students are currently enrolled
in a "total immersion English language program." This program is being
offered in leased facilities owned by Moscow State University's Center
for International Education, facilities located one Metro stop away from
RACU's main campus.
A total of 28 courses are currently being offered at RACU this
fall -- four English language classes, seven business courses, seven social
work courses and ten courses from the general education core.
Through an cooperative initiative with other building partners,
RACU has now been able to gain regular access to the Internet and our
second computer lab is currently equipped with computers which provide
students access to the resources of this worldwide information system.
Since "computer literacy" is one of the goals of our educational program,
Internet access is an essential requirement for our computer facilities.
Charles Mast, a retired U. S. Foreign Service Officer with more
than thirty years of experience in the diplomatic service, mostly in the
Middle East and Asia, has accepted the responsibility of heading RACU's
search process for a new campus facility. As "Special Assistant to the
President," he will direct the facility search process and oversee the
research and analysis of alternative sites. Mast's extensive experience
in cross-cultural work will serve RACU well in this area.
The search for additional facilities for the university continues.
With the assistance of co-brokers, one Western and one Russian real estate
company, RACU staff is visiting properties in pursuit of a building for
purchase or long-term lease which would serve the university's needs for
The second and final setof entrance examinations and personal
interivews for the Fall 1999 semester is set for August 17-20. The fourth
freshmen class is expected to total 40 students. The first day of classes
for the Fall term is Monday, August 30th.
On August 25-27,the RACU staff and faculty will participate in
a retreat, which includes professional development workshops led by John
Chisholm, a business consultant from Champaign-Urbana, Illinois.
During the three weeks from July 7 though July 27, RACU offered
its final two summer modules for its undergraduate students. Professor
Jeff Lehman from Huntington College (Huntington, Indiana) taught a course
on "Management Information Systems" for students with advanced computer
skills, while Professor Fred DeJong from Calvin College (Grand Rapids,
Michigan) taught a course for social work majors on "Gerontology."
A contract was signedfor the leasing of additional classroom and
office space at the International Educational Center of Moscow State University
which is located one Metro stop away from our campus. These rented facilities
will house the English language program of RACU for the fall semester,
a program in which approximately half of our current students will be
enrolled. This full-time English language program is designed to equip
students to participate in classes taught in English without a translator.
Additional computers are being purchased to equip a second computer
lab at the university. Microsoft has graciously given RACU a gift of multiple
sets of Windows 98 and Office 2000 for use in the university's lab and
On Monday, June 14, RACU's second summer session began. 23 social
work students are currently enrolled in a course on "Social Work Values
& Ethics" taught by Professor Beryl Hugen from Calvin College (Grand Rapids,
Michigan), while 30 business majors are attending a course on "Principles
of Finance" taught by Professor John Visser from Dordt College (Sioux
Center, Iowa). These summer courses meet three hours a day, five days
a week, for three weeks.
On Tuesday and Thursday nights, beginning on June 15th, Professor
Stephen Hoffmann from Taylor University (Upland, Indiana) is offering
an evening seminar for three weeks on "Christianity, Politics and Civil
Society: Relating Faith to Political Life in Russia and America." This
course is part of RACU's Continuing Adult Education Program.
On June 22-23, applicants for RACU's fourth freshmen classwill
be taking their written entrance examinations, followed by two days (June
24-25) of oral interviews for those who pass the tests. This is the first
of two admissions sessions held by the university during the summer months.
Meanwhile the search for additional classroom and office facilities
is underway. The goal of the staff is to secure new facilities sometime
in July or early August.
RACU applied and was accepted for membership in the U.S.- Russia
Business Council, a national nonprofit trade association composed of more
than 250 U.S. companies, U.S.subsidiaries of foreign companies and nonprofit
On May 14th, RACU's Board of Trustees met in Moscow and reviewed developments
in the Spring semester and plans for the Summer program. The Trustees
also discussed the need for additional classroom and office space for
the university and various options for meeting the need. In addition,
the new academic catalog for 1999-2000 was approved.
The Board also approved the appointments of three new members to the
Board of Advisors:The Honorable Sam Brownback, U. S. Senator from
Kansas; Mr. Howard Dahl, President of Amity Technology in Fargo, North
Dakota; and Mr. Kyle Royer, Vice President for Finance and Administration
of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities, Washington, D.C.
During the week of May 17-21, four three-week summer modules were
initiated for RACU students. Three of the courses are being taught
by North Americans and one by a Russian. Professor Gary VanderPlaats from
Geneva College (but soon to join the faculty at Dordt College) is offering
a course on "Financial Accounting," the second time he has taught this
course at RACU. Mr. Dave Radius from Christian Reformed World Missions
is offering a course on "Money and Banking," a course he has taught at
several colleges based on his career in the banking world. Professor Billy
Lewter from Palm Beach Atlantic College, who has taught extensively overseas,
is offering a course on "Theories of Counseling." Professor Maria Gariachovo
from the Russian Peoples' Friendship University is offering a new course
at RACU entitled "Management and Law in Social Work," a course designed
to help our social work majors understand the legal and institutional
context for the practice of this discipline in Russia.
Plans for the three three-week summer modules have been finalized.
Eight visiting faculty members from North America will be offering courses
during the months of May, June and July.
U. S. Ambassador-at-Large for Religious Freedom, Dr. Robert Seiple,
visited the campus of the university on Wednesday, April 21. Dr. Seiple,
former President of World vision, wanted to see the university's program
first-hand and learn more about its mission in Moscow.
Discussions are underway in Moscow with other agencies concerning
the possible development of distance education programs for use across
Russia. RACU staff has been asked to join these discussions as the possible
future provider of educational content.
Two additional staff members have been added to RACU's Information Technology Department,Sergei Indlin and Sergei Savushkin. Both new staff members have excellent experience in this field and will greatly strengthen the program. The IT program at the university is now run by "the three Sergei's."
RACU students produced the second edition of their own newspaper,
which contained information items about the university's program and updates
on student activities for the spring semester.
The Spring semester began on January 18 with 35 courses taught by 19 faculty members, 13 Russians and 6 North Americans. This was an increase of 9 courses over any previous semester.