“Today, the country has taken a course towards technological sovereignty, therefore projects that are of practical importance and focused on real customers receive priority support from the state,” said Sergey Bocharov, Rector of Altai State University. – We held a contest at the university and selected seventy projects that may be of interest to companies and organizations. Among them are the development of biological products, special services for farmers to study climate and soil conditions, the creation of a technology for clonal micropropagation of crops, and a line of functional products from Altai medicinal herbs. Many projects are related to the introduction of IT technologies in various fields of activity, which is now in great demand.
Last year, under the Priority 2030 program, the university received federal support – one hundred million rubles. Seventy percent of these budget investments went to the implementation of the most promising projects and the purchase of equipment and consumables for scientific research. The university’s partner network already includes 98 companies and organizations. To expand it, the university created a special center for the development of research and development, with the aim of finding partners for long-term cooperation.
An example of such cooperation is a joint project with the production association Sibbiopharm (Berdsk). The company produces enzymes for food production, feed additives and animal preparations. Last year, due to sanctions, the company faced a shortage of imported recombinant enzymes needed for its production. It turned out that AltSU scientists have been working on the creation of such enzymes for a long time. Their research in the field of recombinant producers became the basis for a joint project.
– The scientific group, which included employees of three divisions of the university, has developed three import substitution enzymes: alkaline protease, heat-stable alpha-amylase and phospholipase C, – said Sergey Bocharov. – At the end of December last year, we delivered the first batch to the industrial partner for testing. We hope that Sibbiopharm will satisfy you with the quality and we will continue to cooperate. This year we plan to start training company employees in the subtleties of microbiology necessary to work with new enzymes.
According to Igor Stepanenko, Vice President of the Government of the Altai Territory, federal funds from the Priority 2030 program are a good support for the development of science in the region, contributing to the introduction of developments in the real sector of the economy.
– But we are concerned about the quality of knowledge of school graduates, which may affect the training of professional personnel and researchers, – emphasized Igor Stepanenko. – The average USE score is declining, and we must solve this problem together with the universities. On the other hand, today there is great competition in secondary vocational schools, young people choose labor specialties. Universities have also felt this change in the preferences of the younger generation, now having to compete with colleges and technical schools for applicants.
Higher education institutions do not hide the fact that there are certain difficulties with the training of scientists. In universities, the proportion of postgraduate students who defend theses is low. Young people are reluctant to go into science; there are no incentives or special interests. “We need to restore scientific schools, ensure the reproduction of scientific personnel,” the tasks are set at AltSU.
– Universities are in a difficult situation today, – confirmed the chairman of the Council of Rectors of the Altai Territory and the Altai Republic, the rector of the Altai State Technical University Andrey Markov. – The consequences of the demographic hole are still being felt, competition is high not only with technical schools and colleges, but also with Siberian universities: Tomsk, Novosibirsk, Krasnoyarsk. We are often blamed for the fact that our graduates leave the Altai Territory. But this only confirms a good level of education, since trained specialists are in demand in other regions and abroad.
Under such conditions, Altai universities are actively trying to attract foreign applicants, and some of them remain in the region after graduation. So, at Altai State University, despite the complication of the geopolitical situation, the number of foreign students increased last year. Their participation for the first time reached a record 21 percent of the total number of students.
– In international cooperation, we have always focused on the countries of Central Asia. Therefore, the change in the geopolitical situation in 2022 did not mean a departure of foreign students and professors from our university. After all, these countries are not included in the hostile list. So we continue to increase the export of education, – emphasized Sergey Bocharov.
AltSU received 100 million rubles from the federal budget in 2022 under the Priority 2030 program.
By the way
In 2022, Altai State University started more than 250 research projects. Its total funding amounted to 253.8 million rubles, including funds from the Priority 2030 program.