Skip to main content

ASU students take home top prizes in national Russian writing contest

Moscow embassy

View of the entrance to the U.S. embassy in Moscow. Photo courtesy the Melikian Center

May 05, 2021

This past April, four ASU students won awards in the 2021 National Post-Secondary Russian Essay Contest. Kirill Bor and Naomi Spektor both won silver medals, while Iryna Shakurova and Christian Shousha earned honorable mentions.

Together, these students showcase the diversity of the Russian department: Bor is majoring in business, Spektor in communication, Shakurova in microbiology with a Russian minor, and Shousha in Russian with an Italian minor. A total of 15 students from ASU entered the contest.

Over 1,100 students from 40 universities around the country participated, with judges in Moscow selecting the winning essays. In recognition of the COVID-19 pandemic, the topic for this year’s contest was "My Favorite Place."

“This is only the second year that ASU has participated, and even with stiff competition from top Russian programs such as the U.S. Department of Defense-funded Defense Language Institute, we are very pleased with our students’ performance,” said Hilde Hoogenboom, School of International Letters and Cultures professor

ASU is a powerhouse in the field: The Russian program ranks among the top 10 schools in the country by number of Russian majors, while the Melikian Center supports innovative research and outreach in Russian and Eurasian studies.

More University news


Case family members perform at a concert to raise money for the James Case Scholarship.

College of Health Solutions scholarship honors speech and hearing professor

James Case loved teaching. Specifically, he loved helping develop future practitioners and teachers in the field of speech-…

February 23, 2024
Exterior of the Westward Ho, an iconic building in downtown Phoenix.

Charter Professor invests in the power of connection

Who do you call if you are feeling lonely, isolated or disconnected? A friend, family member or, if you are one of the residents…

February 22, 2024
An infographic showing headshots of the five recipients of the NCAA Men’s Final Four Phoenix 2024 Legends and Legacy Community award

5 ASU alumni receive NCAA Final Four community award

Five Arizona State University alumni have been named recipients of the NCAA Men’s Final Four Phoenix 2024 Legends and Legacy…

February 21, 2024