The idea of developing tourism here for international students going to Russian universities arose in 2020 as an eﬀective and favorable resource for adaptation during the COVID pandemic, when most of the students found themselves in a situation of complete or partial isolation. In the best case, during the holidays, international students traveled to the well-known major centers of Russia (Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kazan) or stayed in the cities where their universities are located. The inability to travel home and meet with relatives has led to a number of psychological and social problems. There was a need to organize systematic work with foreign students in Russia, aimed at overcoming their problematic conditions. In this regard, the popularization of domestic tourism in the format of Summer/Winter Schools has become particularly relevant, as it has contributed to meeting not only the social, but also the psychological needs of students, including intellectual, physical and emotional.
The participants of the Summer/Winter Schools project "Travelling around Russia" are foreign students located in the territory of the Russian Federation. The main goal of the project is to provide foreign students studying at Russian universities with the opportunity to discover the diversity of Russian regions, with their special ﬂavor and age‑old traditions, to get acquainted with their history, culture, achievements in the ﬁeld of economics, education, science, art, sports, unique features of the region (geographical, climatic etc.) by holding Summer/Winter Schools on university campuses. The relevance of this project is high for international students, and for universities and regions in general. Holding schools contributes, on the one hand, to the development of safe student tourism among foreign students, and on the other hand, to the promotion of the region, including higher education institutions in the international educational space (the so-called "recognition" of the region, university is being formed).
This project was launched by the ﬁrst Winter School "Izhevsk, the city of gunsmiths", which was held during the winter holidays from January 25 to February 1, 2021 in the city of Izhevsk — the capital of the Udmurt Republic, the gunsmith capital of the country. If we talk about great and famous people of Russia, then among others we, of course, mention M. Kalashnikov and P. Tchaikovsky. It so happened that these two names are directly related to the republic, two components are intertwined here: technical and cultural. And this, in addition to the national ﬂavor, also contributes to the uniqueness of the region. The universities that organized the school are Kalashnikov ISTU and Novosibirsk State University. Information support and promotion of the school was carried out thanks to the Association of International Students of Russia. Within two weeks, more than 40 foreign students studying at universities in Glazov, Kazan, Nizhny Novgorod and other cities applied for participation. As a result, 11 foreign students from Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Egypt, Cameroon, Liberia and Nigeria, who are majored in technical, economic and pedagogical ﬁelds, became participants of the ﬁrst Winter School "Izhevsk, the city of gunsmiths". The requirement for the listeners was being interested in the declared topic.
The school program consisted of 40 academic hours and included educational and tourist-excursion modules. The educational part of the program was taught by Mikhail Evgenievich Dragunov, Ph.D., professor, expert in the analysis of weapon subjects development, small arms designer, hereditary Izhevsk gunsmith, son of the creator of the Dragunov sniper riﬂe E. Dragunov. The training was conducted in Russian, in some cases the teachers were making translations into English and French. Before the classes started, Mikhail Evgenievich, anticipating the expectations of the students, who at that time were studying in specialties unrelated to weapons, said: "I will try, to the best of my abilities and the time a llowed, n ot t o i mmerse y ou, b ut t o b ring y ou a l ittle closer to understanding what a weapon is. If I succeed, I will consider that I have fulﬁlled my task." The program, designed for 5 school days, included the following topics: "The history of weapon business development in Izhevsk. The legendary Mosin riﬂe", "Kalashnikov assault riﬂe. Dragunov sniper riﬂe. Nikonov automaton".