The graduation ceremony for the HSE SPb graduates of 2019 took place on June 29. The guests of honor were presented their diplomas by Sergey Kadochnikov, Director of the Campus, as well as their academic supervisors and teachers. The celebration overflowed with emotions, well wishes, and rousing music—what more do you need for a memorable commencement?
Graduation is one of the most important milestones in one's life. Years of study, sleepless nights, exams, and student parties are now things of the past, and a whole new world lies ahead. Graduates, their relatives, and academic staff all gathered together at the Yubileiny Concert Hall on June 29 to celebrate this day and congratulate each other on the beginning of a new chapter.
The celebration began with the donning of graduation caps and gowns, which students received from the university. There were several zones to capture the bright moments of the occassion—two photo booths, several interactive photo zones, and professional photographers and videographers snapped and filmed the graduates and guests. Graduates, meanwhile, readily took advantage of the opportunity to hobnob with their favorite deans, academic supervisors and teachers.
Sergey Kadochnikov, Director of HSE University – St Petersburg, congratulated the graduates and thanked the university faculty who were present for their hard work and commitment. Emphasising that the Higher School of Economics is an outstanding university, he cited the words of Eric Maskin, the Nobel laureate in Economics and Chairman of the HSE Academic Council, that now the abbreviation HSE should mean Нigher School of Everything.
For everyone here in this hall, the Higher school of Economics is the most cherished and beloved university. It has done a lot for you—when you entered its doors, you fell in love with the pursuit of scholarship, project work, and real field research. For many of you, thanks to the Higher school of Economics, St Petersburg has become a home away from home. In the Russian language, we have even given new meaning to the word Vyshka.* It has nothing to do with the old meaning of a most severe level of punishment. Vyshka is something that is near and dear to our hearts.
The University has been rapidly developing. Every year we open new programmes and fields of research, gain new academic institutional partnerships, and open more modern dormitories and academic buildings. I would like each and every one of you to become fellow travellers of ours in this great movement forward—to return as master’s or PhD students, or partner with us on behalf of business where you work. I wish you a good journey and the very best of luck!
Director of the HSE Campus in St Petersburg
Sergey Kadochnikov presented diplomas with honour to 209 graduates. Other graduates (900+) received their diplomas from the hands of their academic supervisors and teachers.
Anatoly Lokotkov, Head Office Deputy Director of Sberbank in St Petersburg, gave a congratulatory speech to the graduates.
Today is not an easy day for you. On the one hand, it ushers joy from getting a diploma—so much effort and energy has been put into getting high marks and completing your studies. But on the other hand, you are now entering a new world of uncertainty that will present a huge number of challenges. Being optimistic and curious is a crucial thing. It is curiosity that will help you ask the right questions and find the right answers.
Head Office Deputy Director of Sberbank in St Petersburg
In order to help graduates cope with future challenges, those who received diplomas with honors were awarded books from Sberbank as well as access to Sberbank's electronic library containing best business literature.
The evening continued with everything that we love most about graduation parties—creative performances from graduates, a touching video from teachers, and a sea of tears, smiles and hugs.
The celebration ended with an incredible performance of My Michelle, a modern Russian rock and synth-pop band. ‘It feels so good to be by your side, just so good to be together,’ sang along the graduates, as if they were to say goodbye to the university.
* Vyshka is an unofficial but widely used term referring to HSE University. 'Vyshka' is short for 'Vysshaya', which means 'Higher'. In Russian vernacular, the word ‘vyshka’ also refers a supreme level of punishment for a crime.