NTU is the first university in Singapore to offer Russian language classes. A student survey indicated a strong interest in the language, and there are many good reasons for that. So here are ten reasons why learning Russian is a great idea:
1. Russian is widely spoken
Russian is the 6th most spoken language in the world. More than 260 million people speak Russian, as it is the official language not only of Russia, but also of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, and it is widespread in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and the Baltic countries.
2. Russian is a language of science
If you have an interest in science, you will know that Russia is at the forefront of scientific discovery and experimentation. Learning Russian will give you direct access to the scientific reports, journals and papers published by the country's scientists.
3. To enter postgraduate programmes
Russia has a robust educational landscape and every year the country admits many foreign postgrad students. Students who study Russian have a high rate of acceptance for graduate programmes.
4. Work and Career
Whatever profession you might be in, you have a good chance of getting a job in a Russian company based in Singapore, or in a Russian speaking country. Many corporations have business dealings with Russia, and if you can speak English and Russian, you might be an asset they will treasure.
Russia is an important player in the global economy. If you want to run your own business and branch out internationally, Russia is a good place to look at. Thus, it would be prudent to know at least some conversational Russian.
6. Russia is a regional economic power
The growth rates of the Russian economy are higher than in Europe, and they are still increasing. Russia is the main European producer of grain and it has one of the biggest agricultural sectors of the world. Russia is also one of the leaders in the geopolitical sector.
If you love to travel and want to explore Central Asia, you have to learn at least some words and sentences. This is simply necessary to survive. Indeed, you can forget about speaking English while buying a train ticket or ordering food. Russian is the trade language of the central Asian region.
8. Russians are great travellers
More and more places throughout South East Asia are becoming very popular with Russian tourists and this opens many job opportunities for people who speak the language.
9. Arts and Culture
Russia has a fascinating and rich culture. From visually stimulating folk tales to scrumptious traditional cuisine, Russia has it all. Russia is famous for its culture and traditions in the arts, such as the most famous composers, ballet companies and theatres. Some of the greatest literary masterpieces come from Russia, composed by great writers, such as Tolstoy and Dostoevsky.
10. Simply, because you like it
Maybe you just love the sound of it. Or maybe your favourite hobby is learning new languages, especially exotic ones. Or maybe you have some Russian friends, or would like to have some. Whatever the reason, just go for it.
For more information, please contact the Russian language coordinator at Russian@ntu.edu.sg and join our facebook group Russian@NTU