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National Research University Higher School of EconomicsNewsOn CampusAmerican Student Does Mathematical Research at HSE

American Student Does Mathematical Research at HSE

Nicholas Howell is a PhD student at University of Oregon. He came to HSE Faculty of Mathematics on the invitation of his research advisor Vadim Vologodsky to do research during two months. In his interview Nick talks about his time in Moscow.

I am from the United States. I have lived in central New York state, in a small town in Minnesota, and I went to Minneapolis for my undergraduate studies. Now I am working on my dissertation at University of Oregon, in the small city of Eugene, OR. This is my first visit to Russia. It seems to me it is rare for Americans to visit Russia; at least, I know very few people who have done this. My friends in the U.S. are all very interested to hear what life in Moscow is like.

I was first told about the HSE by my advisor, Prof. Vadim Vologodsky. I found that the energy and enthusiasm here are great! While here I have mostly been thinking about my research, planning a talk in the geometric structures seminar, and attending various seminars, including seminars of the Laboratory of Algebraic Geometry.

I think that Moscow is a really wonderful city: I have enjoyed the culture and food, parks, convenient public transportation, but most especially the people here have been very nice to me. I like what I have seen of the university, but I admit that I spend most of my days working, so I have not explored it very much.

I have attended several seminars and discussed mathematics with a few students, and they have been very friendly; some of them showed me around the city. There are also a couple of mathematics students in my dormitory, and we talk regularly.

I have not attended very many classes, as most are not directly related to my study, but I have attended several lectures which have been very stimulating, at HSE, Steklov Mathematical Institute, and the Independent University. The style of lectures here is much better than in the United States, in my opinion. They are longer, which allows more time for discussion.

In Moscow I stayed at the dormitory. The staff have been very nice to me, and having easy access to the kitchen and gym is wonderful. It is even possible to ski to the Faculty from the dorm (when there is enough snow).

I do hope to visit HSE again in July – it would be nice to see Moscow in the summer.

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