V. Dushko: “I will never swap Crimea for anything else”

“The profession chose me!” – thinks Sevastopol citizen, captain’s grand-daughter, ship-mechanic’s daughter, Veronika Rostislavovna Dushko. The director of the Institute of Shipbuilding and Maritime Transport of Sevastopol State University is a combination of intelligence, womanhood and of course, a strong personality.

– Veronika Rostislavovna, a young woman supervising an educational institution is not very typical. Probably, you dreamt of it from childhood…

– You know, I didn’t have such dreams when I was a child, I was just purposeful. The future choice was somehow made subconsciously and also in my genes. After leaving school I chose shipbuilding as this sphere was always interesting to me, my specialization field is ‘Shipbuilding and Ocean Engineering’. Then there was a Master’s Course, a Post-graduate course and work at the same department. In 2007 I defended my thesis, in 2008 I became the head of the department ‘Shipbuilding and Ocean Engineering’ and now I have become the director of the institute.

– Is it hard to supervise a mainly male collective, including ‘Sea Dogs’?

– No, it isn’t, when there is mutual understanding and clear tasks. We have a very good collective and experienced heads of departments tell me a lot and share their experience.

– Haven’t you had a wish to go to sea?

– No, I prefer to stay on land! I love the sea, I love swimming in it and I love the sun and summer – even though it can be quite hot.

– Do you like travelling? Where do you like go the most?

– My favourite place is Crimea. Of course, it would be interesting to see life in other countries and learn something new, but I would never swap Crimea for anything else. Everything that I need is here.

– Do the students of the institute think the same?

– If a graduate of our institute with a marine speciality is successful in their professional life they will see many sea ports and countries. They have a lot of impressions, but I can say one thing: everyone wants to come back home to Sevastopol. They grew up here and have their families here. Very few left Crimea and work somewhere else and, apparently, there were certain reasons for that. Seamen always say: “They wait for us at home, we return home”.

– Before the beginning of the new studying year, please tell us what changes await students this year?

– Only good ones. Students are very important for us, we work here because they study here. Our nearest plans are purchasing new equipment and modernizing auditoriums so that students can obtain a high quality education and a good basis for their future career. There are no bad students, they just might be not motivated enough. Every student is good, they only need to know what they really want to do in their future.

– What would you wish to the first-year students?

– I can wish excellent studies, good friends in the group and to adapt quickly. Of course, I would like to say: it is better to focus and start studying immediately. Our task is to help a first-year student adapt in a new environment and let them know what a higher education system, lectures, practical work, and diploma work are all about. Also we will explain that they are now the students of Sevastopol State University and that means that they should hold their head high.