Kazan Federal University dates back to 1804. Located in the historical center of Kazan, it is one of the oldest universities in Russia. For more than two centuries, it has managed to become one of the leading scientific and cultural centers. Such great minds of Russia as Lobachevsky, Butlerov, Arbuzov and others worked in Alma Mater. The university played a huge role in spreading education and science, especially among the people of the Volga region, the Urals and Siberia, and for a long time it remained the main center for the study of oriental languages. The university, located on the picturesque Kremskaya Street, is a popular tourist attraction of the city.
November 5, 1804 is the birthday of one of the oldest universities in Russia. On that very day, the Emperor Alexander 1 signed an Affirmative Letter on the foundation of the Kazan Imperial University. Initially, 4 departments were opened here: moral and political sciences, physical and mathematical sciences, medical sciences and philology. For many years, the university was the easternmost in the Russian Empire; it was thus serving for the Volga, Kama, Ural, Siberia, and the Caucasus.
In its architectural ensemble, the university is considered as the most important urban development site of Kazan, a striking architectural monument of the early 19th century in the spirit of Russian classicism. The most turbulent stage in the history of the university falls on the imperial period, when during the years of the rectorship of N.I. Lobachevsky, the architect M.P. Korinfsky built the main infrastructure facilities: an anatomical theater, buildings of the chemical laboratory, a library and an astronomical observatory.
Since its foundation, Kazan University was a major center of education and science. A number of outstanding scientific discoveries and achievements, such as the creation of the theory of the structure of organic compounds by A.M. Butlerov, the discovery of the chemical element of Ruthenium by K.K. Klaus, the creation of non-Euclidean geometry by N.I. Lobachevsky and discovery of electron paramagnetic resonance by E.K. Zavoisky and others were made here. The university is as well associated with the emergence of book publishing in the region, the appearance of the first provincial newspaper, the development of theatrical life, and much more.
In different years, the students and alumnis of Alma Mater were outstanding scholars and famous people, like the founder of the Soviet Union Vladimir Lenin, writers S.T. Aksakov, P.I. Melnikov-Pechersky, L.N. Tolstoy, V.V. Khlebnikov, composer M.A. Balakirev, artist V.I. Yakob and others.
The University from the moment of its foundation until the revolution of 1917 was called the Kazan Imperial University. In 1918, it was transformed into Kazan State University, and after the death of Lenin, the university, by a decree of the Central Executive Committee, was named in his honor – the V. I. Ulyanov-Lenin Kazan State University. Since 2009, the university holds its current name – Kazan (Volga region) Federal University.
Nowadays, Kazan Federal University is a dynamic modern university. It has 18 major research and educational units and two branches. Over 50,000 students follow over 600 undergraduate and post-graduate degree programs; the number of international students is about 9,000.
The University is actively engaged in international cooperation with more than 40 foreign universities and participates in IREX, Fulbright, USIA, DAAD, TEMPUS, Erasmus-Mundus, INCO-Copernicus and other programs. It is as well a member of the International Association of Universities, the Eurasian Association of Universities.
Over two centuries, a beautiful architecturally designed campus has developed in the style of Russian classicism. Particularly noteworthy is the university courtyard, which is located behind the main building and preserves a warm historical atmosphere. Here, you can see a large beautiful building of the anatomical theater with exhibits brought by Peter 1 from Holland, as well as an interesting observatory.
The university campus is a favorite place not only for students, but also for residents and tourists of Kazan. Since the university’s complex and the campus are situated on a hill, visitors can have a nice panoramic view on the central part of the city.
Museum of the History of Kazan University
An interesting museum is located in the center of the main building of Kazan Federal University. Here you can get acquainted with the two-century history of the emergence, formation and development of Kazan University – from imperial time to modern days.
The main section is devoted to the researchers and discoveries that brought Kazan University and its scientists the world-wide fame, among them are Aksakov, Lobachevsky, Butlerov, Tolstoy and others. In each section of the exhibition you can see relics of the past and present, which have witnessed many events in the history of the university and the country.
The museum includes a memorial complex, the Imperial Hall, which has always been the center of multifaceted university life, as well as the lecture hall of the Faculty of Law with the interior of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, where young students -Tolstoy and Lenin once attended lectures.
– Kazan Federal University is one of ten federal universities in Russia.
-The university has 8 museums; their funds have more than 6,000 exhibits.
– One of the first alumnis of Kazan University was the Russian astronomer Ivan Simonov, who took part in the round-the-world expedition of Bellingshausen and Lazarev.
-Vladimir Lenin entered the Faculty of Law. However, he was expelled after 3 months for participating in student protests and riots caused by the introduction of the new Charter.
-Scientific Library named after Lobachevsky is one of the oldest and largest libraries in Russia. It was founded at the same time as Kazan University.
-The monument of Lenin, located opposite the main building of KFU, is often called the “DiCaprio monument” because of the resemblance of young revolutionary with a popular American actor.
How to get there
Kazan Federal University is located in the city center on Kremlevskaya Street, near the famous Bauman Street.
Address: Kazan, Kremlevskaya Str., 18.
Nearest Bus Stops – “Tukaya Square”,“University” or “Kremlevskaya”;
Metro Stations – «Kremlevskaya» , «Ploshchad’ Tukaya».
You can get acquainted with the university complex during a walking tour along Kremlyovskaya Street or during a sightseeing tour of Kazan.