Fighting corruption is a double edged sword
According to an article in Moskovskiy Komsomolets, fighting corruption is a double edged sword. In this case, the one who cut himself was a whistle-blowing student. The Russian State Technological University has found itself in hot whatever when a student in the fifth year of study is facing backlash both from the student body and the faculty staff and is even up for what he claims is fabricated expulsion. He has heard that a professor was extorting money for passing grades, notified the authorities and took a wire to the final exams last semester. After the rumors proved to be true and the professor was apprehended thanks to the student, he quickly found out that the nail that sticks out gets hammered down. Throughout the fall semester his classmates started treating him as an outcast. To make things worse, he did not receive a passing grade for the course and was refused to retake the exam with those who failed it. The University staff claims he's flunking out on his own, without any pressure. Experts told the newspaper that the best course of action for a student in this situation is to seek legal help and put all interaction in written form - should the staff refuse his attempt to retake the exam with a letter, it would be grounds for a lawsuit; another choice would be pressing for an independent commission to evaluate the student.
Both Church and state are looking into alternative methods of fostering patriotism and spiritual growth in the Russian youth. According to Novye Izvestia, the Russian Orthodox Church has recently developed and launched a video game dedicated to the Battle of Borodino - the largest single-day day battle of Napoleonic Wars. The newspaper clears up the issue that the public raised when the news of the game initially spread - it's not a violent action game, it's a simple trivia aiming at encouraging learning history through interactive means. Apparently, this is only the beginning. A priest is currently developing a adventure game where one can play as either a priest, seminarian, bishop or a sister of Mercy. The game will be set in ancient Jerusalem, Galilee and pre-Christianization Kievan Rus and its aim will be to walk the righteous path, obey God's law and thus earns points for righteous behavior. According to the developer, monk Maxim, the game is targeted at children to the age of 10 and will teach them ecclesiastical law, history of Christianity and the word of God. The game is said to be already blessed by the Church and is set to be available for download in about a year.
Governmental bodies, such as the Ministry of Defense and the Federal Drug Control Service of Russia are also developing video games, including shooters. Experts believe that video games are indeed effective in engaging the younger population - however, Russian experience shows that such government projects often become no more than a tool to divide and pocket budget money.
Kommersant reports that according to his secretary, President Dmitry Medvedev will pay a second visit to the faculty of journalism of the oldest and one of the most prestigious Russian schools of higher education, Moscow State University. His previous visit that happened last Thursday resulted in a scandal which erupted after the public found out that the overwhelming majority of those present were members of pro-Kremlin youth organizations, not University students. Moreover, some students that were not happy with the organization of the event were detained by the Federal Protective Service. The visit was followed by an impromptu volunteer clean-up organized by the faculty student body and alumni, to quote "clean off the blot on the faculty's reputation". The article states that Medvedev's decision to visit the faculty again and to quote "answer any of the students' questions" was posted by faculty staff member Ivan Zasurskiy who has received a call from the President's press secretary. The initial meeting has left quite turmoil in the student body who were not happy with the way they were treated, the newspaper concludes.
RBC Daily writes that the budget allocated for the Ministry of Interior for 2012 will be more than double that of 2011. The money will be spent on previously promised higher salaries and benefits. The budget for the Ministry of Defense was also accordingly increased. At the same time, the Federal Security Service will receive increased funding only in 2013, meaning that the officers will receive less than their military colleagues. Both representatives of the Service and law enforcement experts believe this may have a detrimental effect on the nation's security, for which the Federal Security Service is responsible -after all, monetary compensation is the major motivating factor.