University of Tartu Narva College gets new acting director
From 1 September, the new acting director of the University of Tartu Narva College will be Kristina Kallas who, in addition to maintaining high academic quality, aims to develop the college’s position in society and role as the region’s opinion leader.
The University of Tartu’s Vice Rector for Academic Affairs Mart Noorma said that deriving from its location, the UT Narva College has tasks of high responsibility—advance the integration of two nationalities and be a partner not only to Estonian and European universities but also to Russian study and research facilities.
The new acting director of Narva College Kristina Kallas noted that Katri Raik has made Narva College the region’s leading thinking and education centre and her task is to develop this and extend the college’s cooperation network even further across the border to the east. “For me, Narva College is not only an education facility but also an initiator of ideas and the developer of cooperation in Ida–Virumaa county and of eastern cross–border cooperation,” she said.
In the academic sphere, Kallas’s goal is to develop the college’s curricula and offer the best teacher training in Estonia for work in a multilingual school. One of the goals she set is the consistent implementation of activities that promote graduation within the standard period of study. “As the main difficulty lies in passing the Estonian language proficiency exam, we need to focus on making language studies more efficient,” thinks Kallas.
According to the Vice Rector for Academic Affairs, Kallas has a thorough vision and two characteristics which will help her in this post to support the development of Narva College, Ida–Virumaa county and Narva—knowledge and experience in integration and a deep understanding of the region.
The Rector of the University of Tartu Volli Kalm added that there will definitely be a new contest for the position of the director but during the interim period, Kristina Kallas has the preparation and all the makings to successfully manage the work of the Narva College.
Since the year 2007, Kallas has been a member of the board of the Institute of Baltic Studies. She has worked as the contact person for the Archimedes Foundation’s European Union Research Cooperation Programme, been a senior consultant for public sector communication at the public relations agency Hill & Knowlton and special research fellow at the UT Institute of Government and Politics. From 2011 to 2015 she was chair of the board of the Estonian Refugee Council.
Kristina Kallas studied history at the University of Tartu. In 2002 she defended her master’s thesis “The formation of interethnic relations in Estonian SSR” in Hungary at the Central European University. She is currently in the final stages of her doctoral studies at the University of Tartu and her doctoral thesis discusses the changes in ethnopolitical paradigm in multi–national countries and it focuses on Estonia, Germany and Macedonia.
Until 31 August the acting director of the college is the Building Superintendent Jaanus Villiko.
Additional information: Kristina Kallas, acting director of UT Narva College from 1 September 2015, tel. 5118 311, e-mail: kristina.kallas [ät] ut.ee;
Mart Noorma, UT Vice Rector for Academic Affairs, tel. 523 9159, e–mail: mart.noorma [ät] ut.ee (.)