East European and Russian Studies
East European and Russian Studies at W&L
East European and Russian Studies are as vast as Russia itself. To study Russia is to explore a rich history, culture and politics that examine the best and worst of humankind. Contemporary Russia is an energy and military superpower that aspires to expand its influence around the world. Events in Russia need to be understood against the dramatic background of a millennium-long history, perhaps most dramatically the 20th century experiment with Marxism.
The East European and Russian Studies Program offers students, through its academic major and co-curricular offerings, an interdisciplinary and integrated approach to studying Russian civilization. The EERS Department has been designed to provide the theoretical and practical background needed for either post-graduate study in a number of fields or for successful pursuit of a career immediately upon graduation.
Want an exciting course of study? We run a vibrant program with small classes offering plenty of one-on-one attention.
Looking for a fascinating extracurricular activity? We offer conversational tables with native Russian-language speakers, Russian Theater, Culture Fridays, journalism projects in Russian, movie nights, guest speakers, Borsch Party, and more.
Curious about politics? In this case, you are certainly aware of Russia’s annexation of Crimea, their exploits in Syria and the Mueller investigation. Russia will be a serious political player for the foreseeable future.
Thinking of a career in international law? Russia’s troubled history when it comes to human rights and international treaties on the conduct of war and trade will be of interest, and knowledge of the Russian language will be of use.
Interested in economics? Russia, as a major world supplier of gas and oil, will pique your interest.
Do you love art and literature? Tolstoy and Dostoevsky, Chekhov and Nabokov will forever shine above political and historical turmoil. Avant-garde artists and filmmakers in early 20th century Russia are still undeniably, inspirationally cool.
Options for study abroad include:
- The Spring Term Abroad: Russian Language and Culture Study in Latvia program is designed to introduce Russian language and culture to students with previous Russian language background.
- Students will spend four weeks in Latvia and will stay with Russian-speaking host families. They will experience full linguistic immersion and undergo an amazing cultural experience.
- The U.S. State Department: Critical Languages Scholarships for summer study in Russia is fully funded, including travel, a room with a host family, and three meals a day.
- American Councils for International Education: Russian Flagship Overseas Program is funded by the United States government.
- Boren Scholarship (Study Abroad, U.S. Government Service Requirement).
- Gilman International Scholarship (Study Abroad, Pell Grant-Eligible Students).
- W&L’s Russian Program partners with the College of William & Mary for the six-week summer language intensive in St. Petersburg.
Graduates can pursue varied careers in areas such as international journalism, business, law, nonprofit work, film and Slavic studies.
The East European and Russian Studies Program provides vital scholarship support for prestigious programs like the Fulbright research or teaching assistantship program.