On March 5, 2018, a significant event has occured at the University – reestablishment of the dean's office for foreign students. Initially, the dean's office of foreign department was organized in 1995 for the first time among medical universities in Kazakhstan. Students from India, Pakistan, Palestine, Syria and Jordan were enrolled in the university in various specialties with Russian language of instruction. Since 1998, for the first time in Kazakhstan, our university began to conduct classes in English. In 2007 the foreign department has become part of the dean's office of credit technology training. Since 2016, an associate professor Ainash S. Orazalina has been served as a dean of joint dean's office for undergraduate education. She provided leadership for the university faculty, students and staff in a wide range of activities.
The newly established dean's office of the foreign department currently unites more than 800 students from India, Pakistan and more than 170 local students studying in English. Associate professor Alma U. Nurtazina has been appointed acting dean of the foreign department since 5th of March 2018. Alma Uakhitovna is a faculty member of SMU with about 15 years experience of teaching of medical students in English at the department of general practice. She is also a consultant internist/general cardiologist, physician of highest category. She participated several international workshops and conferences successfully completed the postgraduate course in epidemiology at the University of London/LSHTM and obtained certificates in epidemiology from Harvard and Stanford universities. In 2015 assoc. prof. Alma U. Nurtazina was appointed as a visiting professor of Nagasaki University. Currently she is an associate chairman of the Board for monitoring of dissertations of Master's and PhD-students and an associate chairman of the IFOM group.
Since 2018, one of responsibilities of the dean's office is to run USMLE project – the examination for a medical license in the USA. The primary goal of the project is the effective preparedness of the SMU students for the USMLE followed by successful admission to the residency programs in the USA. This will support the foundation of the extensive international academic and healthcare professional network via medical schools and clinics abroad.
The IFOM (International Foundations of Medicine) project is also being implemented. The project helps medical schools around the world to assess students’ knowledge and compare their performance against the international standards. University Medical foundation program is a preparatory year for those who needs in strenghten their knowledge in biology, chemistry and English. This aims to successful preparedness of students for the bachelor's programs and increase the proportion of students with a high level of English proficiency and, to open IELTS test center in the near future.
The dean’s office plans to expand the geography of foreign applicants: it is expected to increase the recruitment of students from India, Bangladesh and other countries of the South Asian region, the implementation of USMLE and IFOM projects.