Archive for September 30, 2008

Corruption at Our University???–Not so fast!!!

The following are what my Kazakhstani students wrote:


I think ours is the only University without corruption using money as a source of it, but I’ve heard about sexual corruption here, when girls get A+ for being with a lecturer couple times.  Fortunately, Kazakhstan politics let foreign professors come and teach here!


I heard that there are some corruption here.  Some securities helping to students for money to enter the teacher’s office.  And the students grabbing their exams even they can log on their computers to find information about exam.  I think students who are doing this are doing nothing good for themselves.


There was one situation when I first entered our university, I asked is it possible to pay to a teacher so he will get you A+, somebody told me that if you want A+ you should buy a teacher a car!!! And after that I didn’t even think about it.

Today, I didn’t see that someone is trying to “buy a teacher.” But there is a group of people that help students.  For example, made different assignments for us.  Sometimes it is very comfortable.  If you have many subjects and you haven’t time to do assignments, you can ask this group to do it instead of you.  Of course, it is not fair and you don’t learn the main points that your university teachers gives to you!


I have never met corruption at our university and I’m really happy with this, this place is the only university, where there is no corruption in Almaty (in suburban areas situation is even worse).  I think the only reason why corruption still exists is teachers’ small salaries and I think that they are not guilty, this is the government’s fault.  Teachers and doctors are the main professions and their salaries are less than accountants or manager’s, that I think is simply not fair!  Ours is a private institution, that is why it pays good salaries and is independent.  It does not depend on government payments, that is why there is no corruption here.


Taking into account the level of corruption that we have here in KZ (According to the list of most corrupted countries, we are in the top list, definitely top 50 😉 However, our university is considered as non-corrupted, but to tell the truth, you can compare our place with the U.S. where common people do not give or receive bribes but very few people in power do.

I heard very few stories of bribing teachers, usually they are some local teachers, almost none are foreign.  It is understandable that people who are educated, and intelligent and if they earn enough money, they will not get involved with things like bribery. 

On the other hand, teachers in state universities of KZ are also educated and intelligent but they earn almost 5 times less than our university teachers.

Most cases of bribery we may witness at the higher level (like administration), people are merged in groups and lobby interest of each other, relatives work together and things like that happen.

As tolerance of our people is pretty high, I can say that corruption will still exist until new generation comes to power.


Actually, I haven’t heard or seen any cases of corruption here because our institution is private.  I don’t know how it is supported by politics but I know that the President [Nazarbayev] helped it a lot at the early stage of growing when it was only opening.  This place is financed completely form its students.

Honestly, I never heard anything about corruption here at our university.  I didn’t have any professor or staff asking me for a bribe.  There are many professors who come from other countries and I think they think it is not normal to ask a bribe from students in order for them to get a better grade.  However, here we have many professors who are from Kazakhstan and I still didn’t hear anything about corruption because in my opinion they value their job and they make a decent amount of money.  In contrast, I know that in many other universities in Kazakhstan, bribery is a normal thing.  For instance, students can buy the grade that they want.

I don’t know a lot about Kazakhstan’s politics because there are so many things happening in the world.  However, our President [Nazarbayev] visited our campus’ new building this summer.  It was shown everywhere, on TV, newspapers.  My thought is that it was some kind of advertisement for our school.  Our President is very good at International Relationship matters.  Globalization is happening so we need people who can speak English and know about other countries.


I believe teachers at our university do not take any bribes.  But there was a story, last year when we were preparing for our final exams, my friend came to me and said: “Oh, you’re preparing for an exam? Stupid you are.  Here are the answer keys, take it.”  It shocked me.  When the exam day came, I saw that the answers were the same as in the answer key that she gave me.  I got angry.  I think that it is dishonest.  Then I asked her: “Where did you get this answer key?”  She said, “From security.” This answer made me calm, I was happy there was no bribe among teachers.

And what about politics in Kazakhstan, I think it helps the future of our university because in the Ministry of Education of KZ, they made some correctnesses [sic] in the constitution of education and some rules are changed, I think it will help for the future of our school.


I’ve never been a witness of corruption in our university.  Nevertheless, it’s rumored that some students buy answers to the exam.  To be more clear, it’s necessary to say they steal them.  Main tool for doing this dishonest action are the securities.  But in my point of view, that’s not true.  Firstly, most of professors are foreigners.  And second reason is that teachers wouldn’t leave exams in the cabinets.  Even if they do, there are lots of cameras nearly everywhere.

Kazakhstan politics helps our university directly by inviting professors from abroad.  It’s unusual for them to take bribes.  And the exchange programs help a lot, our students are punished in another country and would not like to experience the same feelings coming back in Kazakhstan.


I’ve not heard so many kinds of corruption but a little where people who I’ve heard from said that it is very dangerous and mostly impossible.  Firstly, I heard to buy a diploma from our university and to be finished here (but I don’t know what mark and GPA you will have) it costs about $15,000, but it depends on your mark and GPA that you want, (this is my point of view).  Secondly, I’ve heard that two semesters mark you can get for $6,000.  So Kazakhstan’s politics helps to stop corruption in our university but I don’t think you can stop corruption, not even in 50 years because it is now like a normal thing.



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