The Nizhny Novgorod Commercial Institute
The Nizhny Novgorod Commercial Institute
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Spectacular economic growth of Nizhny Novgorod Province and its cultural impact on the rest of Russian Empire were the main reasons for a School of Commerce to be founded here in 1900. Two other important events contributed to a launch of the Nizhny Novgorod School of Commerce:

  • the successfull Art and Industry Trade Show of All Russia in Nizhny Novgorod in 1896 and
  • the Provisions on Schools of Commerce approved on April 15, 1896 by HE Emperor of Russia,

which triggered creation of a number of such schools all over Russian Empire in Kiev, Moscow, Riga, Rostov-on-Don, Saratov, Warsaw, Simbirsk and other cities in 1900. At those schools the curriculum included not only general education, but more importantly highlighted specialized subjects such as theoretical and practical book-keeping, commercial correspondence in Russian and foreign languages, political economics, trade and industry law, commercial geography, calligraphy etc. The main purpose of such schools was to train leaders of Russian big trade and industrial companies.

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Mayor AlexyMemorsky of Nizhny Novgorod and its Duma's speaker and 1st Guild Merchant NikolausBugrov played a major role in launching the School of Commerce by submitting a formal request to the Finance Minister for a final approval. Later A.Memorsky was elected Chairman of School's board of directors. On September 26, 1900, a solemn ceremony of openning the Nizhny Novgorod School of Commerce (NNSC) took place. The most prominent representatives of the city and province, other educational institutions, bankers and industry leaders, distinguished citizens of Nizhny Novgorod showed at the ceremony. That event became a landmark of commercial education in Nizhny Novgorod.

For the first three years - from 1900 to 1903 - the School was based in the house of merchant V.Zurov on Ilyinskaya street, and from 1903 on it moved to another building at Blagoveshenskaya square.

The first and the only School's Headmaster was College Assessor Vassily Ivanovich Alekseev.

The NNSC was funded from three main sources: aid from merchants and banks of Nizhny Novgorod, donations of the Government and local self-government, and tuition fees. Teachers at School were considered to be the best. For instance, in 1905-06 of 9 teachers 6 had University diplomas, including 3 with PhD degrees. The representatives of all walks of life were allowed to study at the School. From 1900 to 1919 the core of the students made the children of citizens of Nizhny Novgorod: those of merchants and entrepreneurs - 62%, those of peasants - 29%, offsprings of upper class - 7%. From 1907 to 1914 26% of all graduates were awarded with gold and silver medals for successful completion of studies. 13.9% were nominated Candidates of Commerce. 56.2% continued their studies at other higher education institutions, 27.8% entered Moscow Commercial Institute.

After 1917 the situation in Russian commercial education changed dramatically. For a certain period of time the School still worked, yet the new revolutionary regime and its war-communism economic policy left no doubt about its gradual suspension. Yet the traditions of commercial education were too strong to disappear so they had been transformed and maintained under new conditions.

On March 2, 1919, in the building of the former NNSC a new Industrial and Economic College was initiated. The plans were to train staff for accounting, control and inventory services along with personnel for government and coop distribution chains. The College was directed by the leading NNSC's teachers such as V.Murashev, I.Romanov and N.Savvin. Later I.Romanov was appointed a Headmaster. Later College got through a number of restructions following the drifts in the government's economic policy with introduction of new specialities. In 1932 College moved to a new building at Sovnarkomovskaya street, and in 1969 occupied a new facility at Prospect Lenina, 27 where it is now.

After WWII the Gorky Soviet Trade College (a new name of the former NNSC) strengthened its industry image of a leader able to compete with Moscow and Leningrad Trade Colleges. Here new and modern procedures have been run, new education methods tested, new courses and programs designed. College has published a number of specialized textbooks recommended by Ministry of Education of USSR for other colleges.

In 1954 in Gorky (Nizhny Novogorod in the Soviet era) an education and consulting branch was opened by Soviet Trade Institute by Correspondence (STIC). Initially its staff consisted of only two administrators with the whole tuition process provided by the staff hired from local higher education institutions and Moscow Head Institute. As time went on STIC has grown its own full-time staff of skilled teachers and empowered itself with its own property, which allowed to enjoy the status of Moscow Institute's Department. In accordance with its general specilization the Gorky Department trained skilled specialists to work in Soviet wholesale and retail companies (state-run and coops) including economists, accountants and food technology engineers.

In 1991 STIC was transformed to Nizhny Novgorod Commercial College (NNCC).

New trends in the economy, policy and education of the 90s made an impact on the commercial education system as well. Nizhny Novgorod needed a higher education institution which could train specialists for an emerging market economy, that's why a joint decision about creating our Commercial Institue was taken by Russian Federal Government's Trade Committee and Nizhny Novgorod Province Administration based on the two currently exisiting high schools - Commercial College and Moscow State University of Commerce (formerly STIC).

So in 1993 Nizhny Novgorod Commercial College was transformed to Nizhny Novgorod Commercial Institute (NNCI).

The Decree on incorporation of the Nizhny Novgorod Commercial Institute was signed by Chairman Viktor Chernomyrdin of Government of Russian Federation on July 12, 1993. The Order by the State Trade Committee as of July 21, 1993, read as follows: "For multi-level training of specialists for merchandize and services markets on full-time and part-time basis on the following higher education specializations: management, economy and commerce".

That's how the first State specialized commercial higher education institution in the Volga-Vyatka region was launched.

Rapid and successful growth of the Institute can be attributed to a factor of its inheritance.

Restoration and vibrant development of the "Old School" of Commerce's traditions is on top of NNCI agenda and at the same time has been a solid foundation for successful growth of the Nizhny Novgorod Commercial Institute today.