Russia: Moscow Regional Area Study

Program Snapshot
Semester: Fall, Spring, or Full Year
Offered: This program is currently on hiatus. For Russian Language programs, please see our Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, or Latvia options.
Estimated Dates:  Fall: late August to mid-December, Spring: early February to late May
Program Focus: Regional Area Study
Prerequisites: Minimum of 2.5 GPA. Students must satisfy the Words and Numbers CORE requirement before participating in an overseas program.
Housing: Dormitories
Campus Contacts:
Maria Hristova
Assistant Professor of Russian, Russian Section Head, 503-768-7442

Program Design

In cooperation with SRAS, Lewis & Clark offers a program of culture and language study in Moscow, Russia.

This program includes Russian and European studies coursework focusing on international relations, economics, diplomacy, geopolitics, and sociology with optional language study. Students have the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of extracurricular activities, from international conferences and lectures to concerts, dances, and clubs. Additional out-of-classroom activities take advantage of the wide intellectual and cultural resources of Moscow in a hands-on program designed to give you broad perspectives on Russian history, geography, international relations, economics, politics, and demographics.

The Moscow State Institute of International Relations (MGIMO) is the host institution for this program. Russia’s most prestigious university for students with international interests, MGIMO is situated in southern Moscow, home to many higher education institutions. The student body of 6,500 is drawn from the top ranks of Russian schools and partner universities around the world. Renowned graduates include presidents, prime ministers, and foreign ministers, including current Russian minister of foreign affairs, Sergei Lavrov.

The school offers a wide selection of courses, all taught in English by MGIMO faculty. Students with a high Russian language proficiency may petition to enroll for credit in courses taught in one of MGIMO’s many BA programs taught in Russian.

As Europe’s largest city, Moscow is a bustling metropolis and the heart of a new, modern Russia. Glass skyscrapers and green, outdoor spaces combine with the vibrant symbols of the past to create a constantly innovating landscape that reflects the fast-paced energy and power of the city. This is where 10% of Russia’s population lives, where its domestic and foreign policies are decided, and where some 35% of its GDP is generated. To understand Russia’s ambitions and potential, you must understand Moscow.

*Please note: This program is currently on hiatus.


Requirements Fulfilled:

General Education - This program fulfills the Global Perspectives general education requirement for students who successfully complete 8 or more semester credits.

This program does NOT fulfill the overseas study requirement for the World Languages major with Russian as primary language.

Credits: Credit earned varies based on courses completed, but students may earn up to 19 credits. Overloads are not permitted. Please note that credits are measured in ETCS credits, which will be converted to half that number of LC semester credits.


Students choose from courses offerings at MGIMO in economics, international relations, business, and law, with options taught in English and Russian. Courses in Russian are taken with Russian-speaking students. Courses in English are taken with a mix of international and Russian students. Most students take at least 24 ECTS (12 US semester credits), or between 6-8 courses.

Excursions: Students travel to St. Petersburg on an excursion for 3 days – and explore the city on a guided tour.

Student Life

Housing: MGIMO provides students with double occupancy rooms in a dormitory located on campus, just a five-minute walk from the main classroom building. The dorm, with en suite bathrooms and a shared kitchen on every other floor, is a mix of international students and Russian nationals.

Extracurricular Activities:

Cultural programming in Moscow is designed to be an intensive, hands-on, sensory introduction to the wide diversity of Russia and Eurasia. It is meant especially for those students interested in diplomacy, international relations, and modern Russian identity. Events have typically included:

- Central Asian, Georgian, and Soviet dinner-seminars
- Tour of the Kremlin: Behind the Red Walls
- Masha’s Dacha (cultural and culinary day trip)
- Tour of Moscow’s Cathedral Mosque
- Socials with Locals: Mixers with young Russians
- Walking Seminar: The Origins of Modern Russia
- Yasnaya Polyana (Tolstoy’s Historical Estate)
- Seminar: Russian Politics and Policy
- Tour of Red Square: Lenin’s Mausoleum and St. Basil’s
- Cultural Performance (Night at the Ballet or Folk Dancing)
- St. Petersburg (weekend trip)
- Survival Russian (Russian language and culture in practical situations)

Other events will be held based on student interest and my include visits to NGOs, think tanks, archives, or related events. Visits in the past have included Memorial, Carnegie Moscow Center, PIR Center, Human Rights Watch, and others.


2021-2022 Fee Breakdown*

Total Fee (includes Tuition, Program Fee, and Health & Wellness Fee): $36,259

Tuition: $28,485

Program Fee: $7,737

Health & Wellness Fee: $37**

Included in the program fee are room/housing, board/meals, and administrative fees. Not included are airfare, passport and visa expenses, primary insurance coverage, photographs, books, immunizations, and incidentals. 

*Fees are updated every February for the following academic year.

**The Health & Wellness Fee supports the operations of Wellness Services staff in delivering pre-program orientation services, as well as in providing health-related consultation regarding participant health needs. All students in the College of Arts and Sciences pay a mandatory fee of $37 per semester.

Stipend: Students will receive a stipend to cover the cost of meals and transportation costs not covered by the program fee.

Estimated Airfare (Round Trip PDX to SVO): $800-$1,700

Estimated Travel Document Fees: $260-$290

Estimated Health Insurance Fee: $1,350.50

All students participating in overseas programs are automatically enrolled in iNext, a supplemental travel insurance program. The fee for iNext is covered in the program cost. However, students are also required to have comprehensive health insurance during their time abroad. All students participating in overseas programs, both abroad and domestic, are automatically enrolled in the College’s student health insurance program. Similar to a regular semester on-campus, students participating in overseas programs may waive enrollment in the student health insurance program if they have other comprehensive health insurance (e.g., through a parent, guardian or employer) that 1) provides coverage for them in the geographic region in which they will be studying and 2) includes mental health benefits. Click here for more information regarding health insurance & overseas programs.

Program Preparation

Application Process: This program has a dual application process. Student must first submit a Lewis & Clark Application. Once admitted by Lewis & Clark, the students will receive instructions for submitting their secondary application to SRAS and will receive a separate notification letter of admittance.  Please keep a digital copy of your essays and other application materials as you will need to submit these similar materials to SRAS. Please note that this secondary application process can be as late as the semester preceding your scheduled participation.

For more information about the application process, click here.

Travel: Students usually fly into the Sheremetyevo International Airport (SVO), where they are met by SRAS staff and transported to orientation.

Visa: Students with a U.S. passport will be required to apply for a visa in order to participate in this program. More information will be provided upon admission to the program.  

Country-Specific Health Information: Click here to view specific health information for people traveling to Russia.

State Department Country Information: Click here to visit the State Department’s Russia page.

Moscow, Russia