A journey from Africa to Siberia for the sake of education, love, and career

20.08.2021 | 11:59

“Bringing Together Knowledge and People” and “All Roads Lead to KemSU”. These two slogans have turned out to be prophetic for a young man from Cameroon who is going to apply to Kemerovo State University to be near the love of his life! Our Alma Mater is indeed a multicultural environment where people from all over the world meet, talk, exchange their ideas, and, sometimes, get married!

“I love you to the moon and back” is a popular cliché. “I love you to Siberia, and I’m not going back” – this is how one brave guy from Africa could start his love story. When Lolita Ashurova from Kemerovo met Rodrigo from Cameroon, an immense distance separated them. Lolita graduated from the Institute of Philology, Foreign Languages, and Media Communications in 2019, and now Rodrigo is going to pursue a master’s degree at Kemerovo State University to be with her. And no, he is not going back: he wants to stay in Russia and work for the good of Kuzbass.

“We met on Instagram during the early lockdown. Rodrigo has been learning Russian for two years, and my English and French are quite fluent, so we never get lost in translation: I can easily switch to another language if needed. At first, our relations were anything but romantic. We realized we were into each other only when we finally met in person after six months of internet communication. And that was when our love story started. We are going to get married in the near future and settle down in Kemerovo. Our parents are happy for us and approve of our decision. Rodrigo highly appreciates Russian education and plans to get a master’s degree in the field of IT. We both are going to get a PhD afterwards. Rodrigo liked it in Kemerovo very much, its infrastructure, beautiful streets, and the constant changes for the better. He first came here as a guest in 2020, and now he is here to stay, we moved in together. I took him on a campus tour, and Rodrigo really liked the Institute of Fundamental Sciences and immediately decided to apply. We are going to visit Rodrigo’s homeland when the country reopens. It will be my first visit to Africa, but we’re not planning to move there. On the contrary, we’d like to stay in Kemerovo and start our own business, something for the good of Kemerovo citizens. Why Kemerovo? I was born in this city, this is where I belong, we have a family cottage here, and Rodrigo and I help my folks a lot”.