Полоцкий государственный университет


Rector is a major figure, an idea person and an example to follow at any time of the history of our alma mater. Further institution development way depended on the decisions made by its authorities: innovations were introduced, educational system was improved and traditions were established. Each contribution of the rectors laid an solid foundation for our university to rely on and to introduce new achievements and events into its glorious annals.

On May 27 of 2020, in the run-up to the 440th anniversary of Polotsk State University, a History and Art Gallery “Rectors of Polotsk State University” was opened. The opening ceremony started with the welcoming speech of Professor Dmitry Lazovsky, an honored education worker of the Republic of Belarus, Doctor of Engineering.

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The Gallery is opened on the ground floor of Polotsk College (Academy). The buildings of the former College were transferred to Polotsk State University on behalf of the President of the Republic of Belarus.

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The exposition is based on the concept of an open book with the rectors’ names from 1581 to the present.

Victor Lukyanenko, an associate professor at the Department of Architecture of Polotsk State University, is the author of the concept. Alexander Dranets, a famous Belarusian sculptor and the author of the monument to Francysk Skaryna near the National Library in Minsk, made bas-reliefs.

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The names list in the gallery is the result of a rigorous archival research carried out by university staff, lecturers and students. However, not all the names have been found yet for the archives of Krakow, Vatican City, St. Petersburg and Moscow need to be investigated. The Department of History and Tourism took over the task to fill the gaps in this list. Nevertheless, even the incomplete list of rectors’ names is quite impressive.

Rectors of Polotsk College

Piotr Skarga (since 1582), Stanislav Vloshek (since 1586), Adam Yakubovich (since 1595, 1597 and 1611), Mikhail Slabovsky (since1596 and 1600), Wojciech Przhevadishevsky (since 1599), Valentin Matusevich (since1605), Simon Blonsky (since 1617), Stanislav Kasinsky (since 1626, 1630 and 1644), Yakov Lyakhovsky (since 1629 and 1633), Yan Kenderovsky (since 1634), Wojciech Slyasky (since1635), Yury Goffman (since 1639), Andrey Brukhman (since 1640), Yakov Ugorsky (since 1647), Avgustin Yaguza (since 1651), Stanislav Przhigotsky (since 1653), Nikolay Slyansky (since 1667 and 1675), Daniel Bootvil (since 1671), Casimir Koyalovich (since 1673), Stefan Dizhevsky (since 1677), Martin Nesterovich (since 1680), Mikhail Buynovsky (since 1683), Andrey Vyrvich (since 1688), Casimir Belsky (since 1691 and 1703), Nicolay Zevella (since 1697), Yan Martelli (since 1700), Matvey Karsky (since 1709), Kshishtov Yeynorovich (since 1710), Yakov Volodkovich (since 1713), Kshishtov Garshvila (since 1715), Wojciech Bogushevsky (since 1719), Stanislav Sakulsky (since 1727 and 1735), Antonius Mishtolt (since 1731), Stanislaus Czerniewicz (since 1772), Lyustig Antony (1805-1812). 

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Rectors of Polotsk Academy:

Lyustig Antony (since 1812), Landas Aloizy (since 1814), Raymund Bzhezovsky (1817-1820).

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Rectors of Polotsk State University:

Boris Sokolov (since 1968), Petr Shved (1976-1987), Ernst Babenko (1970-1987).

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Here, one can observe the growth of scientific achievements and the improvement of the university buildings appearance for more than four centuries. From the first wooden buildings of Polotsk College to an architectural ensemble of Polotsk Academy, from the building of Novopolotsk Polytechnic Institute to well-equipped modern university buildings in Novopolotsk, Mezhdurechye and Polotsk. The project “History and Art Gallery “Rectors of Polotsk State University” plays a crucial role and is opened in the run-up to the 440th anniversary of our university, the oldest higher educational establishment in Belarus!

Viktor Lukyanenko
Alexander Borisevich
Photos: Polina Kosarevskaya