Russian is classified by the U.S. State Department as a "critical language," meaning language proficiency remains a politically relevant skill and an in-demand field of expertise among employers. Understanding Russia’s changing role on the world stage also demands in-depth knowledge of its rich literary and cultural heritage.

Dickinson’s Russian program is designed to prepare students to meet contemporary challenges in any profession. Our curriculum combines intensive language training with a wide variety of interdisciplinary courses taught in both Russian and English. A Russian major or minor is often paired with business, international studies, environmental science, security studies and other foreign languages. Our alumni have successful careers in banking, education, government, law, science and the art world, to name a few.

What Makes Dickinson's Program Stand Out?

  • Intensive Russian for all levels, from beginners to heritage speakers
  • Career-focused courses such as Professional Translation and Russian for Intelligence Careers
  • National leader in Fulbright fellowships and other competitive scholarships
  • One of few colleges that maintains its own study-abroad center in Russia, so that students’ education can be tailored to their needs and interests
  • The Russian House: an on-campus residence option that encourages community and collaboration among students of all levels
  • Opportunities to conduct internships in Russia

Contact Info


Elena DuzsAssociate Professor of Russian

Department Coordinator

Shana KitnerAcademic Department Coordinator






Rm. 105, 1st floor, Bosler Hall Mailing Address

Department Features

Student Outcomes

Where Our Students Go From Here


  • United States Foreign Service
  • J.P. Morgan Chase
  • National Security Agency
  • Sotheby’s Auction House
  • U.S. Department of State
  • Center for International Private Enterprise
  • American Councils for International Education
  • U.S. Government Accountability Office
  • National Committee on American Foreign Policy
  • Mercuria Energy America
  • The Washington Post
  • Disney Company Russia

Graduate Schools

  • Harvard University
  • Georgetown University
  • Fulbright Program
  • Tufts University
  • AmeriCorps
  • Higher School of Economics
  • Columbia University
  • University of California Berkeley
Where Our Students Have Interned
  • Bolshoi Ballet Company 
  • Greenpeace Russia
  • Summer Language Institute – University of Pittsburgh
  • Russian State Historical Museum
  • Library of Congress
  • US Army War College – Peacekeeping and Stability Operations Institute
  • American Embassy in Moscow

Student Perspective

“The curriculum is intense and challenging, but the department is very supportive of their students and constantly provides the help and support necessary to master the language. If you complete four years of Russian at Dickinson, you will have cultivated a very marketable skill that will serve you well in both the job market and graduate school, as Russia becomes an increasingly important, yet deeply and perpetually misunderstood, force in the contemporary world.”

—Phil Kiffer ’11 (Russian, history), Ph.D. candidate in Russian/Soviet history at Georgetown University

Most students studying the Russian language spend a semester or year abroad at the Dickinson Center in Moscow. In this video, students speak about the academic and cultural program, host families, and all the benefits of living in Moscow—the most vibrant and diverse city in Russia.

Alumni in Action

Department News