School established to promote 'One Belt One Road' languages
A School of Russian and Eurasian Studies was set up on Friday at Shanghai International Studies University to serve the increasing needs of foreign language talent brought by the “One Belt One Road” Initiative.
The new school was established based on the university’s original Russian Department and will build up a strategic group of Russian and Eurasian languages to promote education and research on languages and cultures of countries and regions involved in the “One Belt One Road” Initiative.
Li Yansong, president of the university, said the university has been dedicated in building itself into a world-class university specializing in global studies and cultivating excellent international talents with multilingual capability.
He said the School of Russian Eurasian Studies will further promote education of non-common languages in close connection with international issues that concerns China, enhance cross cultural area studies and explore ways of cultivating international talents that own brilliant intercultural communication abilities and capabilities of make practical use of their professional knowledge and skills to address international challenges.
SISU has been promoting non-common language education in recent years. It launched the first class of Uzbek in October 2015 in the Russian Department. In November 2015, it opened China’s first Kazakhstan Center and welcomed its first class of undergraduates majoring in Hungarian in September last year.
It officially set up the Kazakh major on Friday and will began enrolling students majoring in Uzbek and Czech in September next year.
By then, the School of Russian and Eurasian Studies will offer education of seven languages — Russian, Ukrainian, Hungarian, Polish, Kazakh, Czech and Uzbek.
The Russian Department was upgraded as the sharp increase in demand for non-common languages against the backdrop of the Belt and Road initiative.
In the past three years, both employment rate and market need for such talents has been rising.
Take Russian for example, the employment rate of graduates majoring in the language in the university has been above 96 percent since 2015. The Russian majors employed by government departments and state-owned enterprises accounted for 23.33 percent of all its graduates majoring in Russian in the past three years.
The demand for talent of other languages has also been increasing, according to the university.