It was originally housed in the large and beautiful Imperial School mansion built in 1796. The building was later reconstructed and joined together with three neighboring houses to form the present KFU main building. The main building of Kazan University designed by architect N.G.Pyatnitsky was built in the 1820s. Its classical three-porch façade has survived until this day. In the next decade, during the rectorship of N.I.Lobachevsky, the University’s classical architectural ensemble was completed under the supervision of architect M.P.Korinfsky. Along the central line of the main building, Korinfsky added the Anatomy Theatre, a southern centerpiece of the entire university complex, and erected the buildings of the Chemical Laboratory and Library, and Astronomical Laboratory and Clinic.
In the 20th century several new university buildings were erected outside the original historical site. An 18th century Theological Seminary was redesigned to house the Geology Faculty. Between the 1960s and 1970s Kazan University has added two high-rise academic & laboratory blocks to the northwest of the main building. A cultural and sports complex “UNIX” was constructed in 1989. In May 2010, the Prime Minister of Russia Vladimir Putin participated in the solemn opening of the sports complex “Bustan.” In preparation for the 200th year anniversary of Kazan University, the eastern wing of the main building was erected in accordance with architect Karl Mufke’s plans from the beginning of the 20th century.
The University’s history abounds with the names of prominent people who have worked here and created numerous research schools of international acclaim. Father of non-Euclidian geometry, mathematician Nikolai Lobachevsky played a very important role in the development of the University during two decades of his rectorship. In 1842 a talented alumnus of Kazan University professor N.N.Zinin obtained synthetic aniline from nitrobenzol. This reaction marked the beginning of industrial organic synthesis and became a basis for the development of aniline-dye and the pharmaceutical industry. Two years later, in 1844, another Kazanite, professor K.K.Klauss, discovered a new chemical element Ruthenium, the only natural element discovered in Russia, which he named after Russia (Ruthenium is the Latin for “Russian”). A.M.Butlerov made an even greater contribution to the fame of Kazan Chemical School by the invention of a theory of chemical structure of organic compounds. This invention is as important for the organic chemistry as D.Mendeleyev’s Periodic Table of Chemical Elements for inorganic chemistry.
Since the first half of the 19th century Kazan University became the largest center of Oriental Studies in Europe and a home to the world famous Kazan Linguistic School founded by Baudouin de Courtney. In 1819-1821 outstanding alumnus and scholar of Kazan University I.M.Simonov participated in the discovery of Antarctica during the first round-the-world expedition and pioneered Antarctic studies. A.F.Samoilov, founder of electrophysical school, recorded first electrocardiogram in Russia. Father and son A.Ye.Arbuzov and B.A.Arbuzov gave birth to a new field of studies – chemistry of organophosphorus compounds. At the climax of the Great Patriotic War, in 1944, E.K.Zavoisky discovered the phenomenon of electronic paramagnetic resonance. His research was then continued by S.A.Altshuler, B.M.Kozyrev and other scientists – representatives of the most influential school of magnetic radiospectrometry and quantum electronics.
During its more than 200 years of existence Kazan University produced eighty full members and corresponding members of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
The University is connected with the development of the publishing industry and the publication of the first provincial newspaper. It also contributed to the evolvement of theatre performance.
The founder of the Soviet state, V.I.Ulianov-Lenin, writers S.T.Aksakov, L.N.Tolstoy, P.I.Melnikov-Pechersky, V.V.Khlebnikov, composer M.A.Balakirev, painter V.I.Yakobi and other prominent figures studied at Kazan University.
By the Decree of the President of Russia Boris Yeltsin of July 30, 1996 Kazan State University was added to the State Code of Particularly Valuable Objects of Cultural Heritage of the Peoples of the Russian Federation.
Federal state autonomous educational institution of higher professional learning “Kazan (Volga Region) Federal University” was established subject to the Executive Order of the President of Russia D.A.Medvedev “On the establishment of federal universities in North-Western, Volga, Ural and Far Eastern federal districts” and the Resolution of the Government of the Russian Federation of April 2, 2010, by way of changing the type of the existing state educational institution of higher professional learning “Kazan State University named after V.I.Ulianov-Lenin.”
Kazan University at a Glance
Founded in 1804, Kazan University is the second oldest university in the Russian Federation. An internationally acknowledged centre of academic excellence, it is routinely listed among top 10 institutions of higher education in the country. Today KFU employs more than two thousand faculty members. More than 30% of higher-education teaching personnel are young scientists, specialists and lecturers.
· In October, 2009 the University received the high federal status. This became the logical continuation of the 205-year history of the development of Kazan University and a foothold for the breakthrough in the sphere of educational technologies. KFU is a bright example of a classical university – source of fundamental knowledge and constant development resulting in the introduction of new specialties in high demand in the real sector of economy. We build new laboratories and classes, introduce new technologies and subjects, cooperate with industry and business. Federal status opened up new opportunities for educational, research and international activity of the university.
- The main centre of higher education for a vast region, KFU has over 47,000 students, who follow 300 degree programs. It employs members of science academies, professors, state prize winners, and leading scientists. Visiting professors of foreign universities provide their experience and connections for the benefit of KFU students.
- The University carefully preserves the traditions of its world renowned scientific schools of mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, and linguistics. Over the last decade it has succeeded in promoting state-of-the art research in the areas of nanotechnologies and biomedicine, psychology and cultural studies, humanitarian and pedagogic technologies, often taking advantage of interdisciplinary approaches.
- KFU continues to serve as a leading national research centre, providing its students and staff, as well as academic visitors, with many laboratories, excellent museums, a botanical garden, research field stations, three astronomic observatories and many other facilities. Our Lobachevsky Library, containing over five million works, is one of the largest and oldest in Russia. The University also has IT centers, publishing houses and a recreational centre that is at the heart of the cultural and sporting life of the city, as well as the 2013 World university games sport facilities.
- The University is a recognized leader in international cooperation. Each year KFU members win dozens of grants from international foundations, involving themselves in projects with cutting-edge research centers in many countries. Our students and professors actively participate in bilateral research and exchange programs with about 100 partner institutions in more than 35 countries.
- KFU is the only Russian higher education institution which has enough housing units to accommodate all students who can choose from 26 comfortable dormitories. In 2010 KFU took possession of 20 housing units of the 2013 World university games village. Dormitories have everything one can dream about – gyms, creative studios, reading halls, computer labs with regular access to Internet, dining halls, etc. Dormitory students are assisted by tutors and supervisors, sports and cultural events take place on a weekly basis.