Genesee Community College Signs Agreement With Kazakhstan Economic Research Institute

Batavia, New York — Genesee Community College is pleased to be contributing to a stronger global economy through a vibrant localized network. This past week, President Stuart Steiner signed a cooperative agreement with the Economic Research Institute (ERI), The Ministry of Economics and Budgetary Planning of the Republic of Kazakhstan and Kazakh Economy, Finance and International Trade University (KEFITU) located in the central portion of the Eurasian continent. The agreement will contribute to the improvement of teaching, research, academic administration, and international understanding between the two institutions positioned on opposite sides of the world.

The agreement came into being through Dr. AigulToxanova, Director of the Macroeconomy Department and Doctor of Economic Sciences at ERI. Dr. Toksanova’s daughter, Zhanara, is a new international student just beginning her first semester within Genesee Community College’s Accounting department and also living at College Village. After attending high school as an exchange student in Waco, Texas, Zhanara knew she wanted to continue her education in the United States. Zhanara and her family wanted her to begin her studies in a smaller college environment where she could focus on her work and be assured a quality and affordable education.

They were introduced to Genesee Community College through ACCELS, or the American Councils for International Education. After speaking with Meryll Pentz, Genesee’s International Student Advisor, they were impressed by the College and enjoyed a series of pleasant exchanges and surprises through each phase of the application, enrollment and registration process.

After coming to the Batavia campus this past week and fully seeing the College as well as College Village, they also met with a wide range of faculty, advisors, and even the President. The Toxanovas have been so impressed, that they decided that not only was Genesee the right college for Zhanara, it would also be a perfect fit as a cooperative partnership with ERI.
“We are very impressed with Genesee Community College,” said Dr. Toxanova. “Everyone we’ve met has been so friendly and helpful. There is a focus on study and education here and the facilities are excellent. We are pleased that our daughter will be attending Genesee.”

As Professor of Management and Marketing Department at KEFITU, Dr. Toxanova plans to further develop the relationship between her institution and Genesee. KEFITU is working to educate citizens and to improve the quality of life in Kazakhstan and the Central Asian region through teaching, learning, the advancement of knowledge in the fields of business administration and social science, and through community service. The Kazakh Economy, Finance and International Trade University, which consists of about 5,000 students, offers graduate and undergraduate degrees in a wide range of business and social science fields. Like Genesee Community College, ERI and KEFITU is celebrating their 40th anniversary.

“We are very excited about this cooperative agreement with ERI and KEFITU,” said President Steiner. “This is a wonderful opportunity to exchange faculty, administrators, students, and ideas with an international institution. We are truly honored that the educators at ERI and KEIFTU have chosen to work so closely with Genesee.”

President Steiner added that the invitation to Genesee faculty to participate in an economic summit this September in Kazakhstan is the kind of opportunity he hopes will continue in the near future with a more feasible timetable allowing for participation.

Kazakhstan, which has a population of approximately 15 million and is the ninth largest country in the world, has the potential for becoming one of central Asia's richest countries because of its huge mineral and oil resources and its liberalized economy, which encourages Western investment. The Kazakh economy continues to grow at a rate of over 9% a year on the back of its oil and gas reserves, and is looking to diversify more in the manufacturing sector as well.

For more information contact Donna Rae Sutherland, Associate Director of Marketing Communications, at 585-343-0055 x6616. 

Editor’s note: A photograph of Dr. Aigul Toxanova, Director of the Macroeconomy Department at Economic Research Institute with the Ministry of Economics and Budgetary Planning of the Republic of Kazakhstan and her daughter, Zhanara with President Steiner of Genesee Community College is available at: