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On January 21, Lobachevsky University hosted the First Theoretical and Practical Forum UNN unITed 2021. The event was held in an online format. Managers and representatives of more than 20 leading Russian and foreign high-tech IT companies took part in the forum, including Intel, Huawei, Orion Innovation, Harman, Sberbank, VTB, Rostelecom, Megafon, and a number of other recognised industry leaders. The main outcome of the forum was to establish a permanent Coordinating Council made up of the heads of Lobachevsky University's partner companies. Elena Zagaynova was elected Co-Chairman of the Coordinating Council on behalf of Lobachevsky University, and Ivan Kuzmin,General Manager of Intel R&D in Russia, on behalf of IT companies. Also, an IT Expert Council was created by the decision of the forum participants. It includes representatives of companies responsible for cooperation with universities. Victor Gergel, Director of the UNN Institute of IT, Mathematics and Mechanics, was elected Chairman of the Council. Heads and representatives of leading IT companies that are long-term and good partners of Lobachevsky University spoke at the forum: Ivan Kuzmin, General Manager of Intel R&D in Russia, Sergey Tiraspolsky, Technology Planning and Cooperation Manager at Huawei Research Centre in Nizhny Novgorod and Vladimir Volkov, Deputy Director of Orion Innovation Development Centre.

Ivan Kuzmin shared on the history of Intel's cooperation with UNN: "Intel's presence in Russia and in Nizhny Novgorod in particular became possible because we have a good base university, UNN, with whom we have long and fruitful cooperation. We have been in Nizhny Novgorod for a long time and plan to grow and develop further, and our growth and development is probably impossible without the development of the entire ecosystem as a whole, and definitely impossible without the development of interaction and partnership with Lobachevsky University".

Sergey Tiraspolsky spoke about how Huawei sees the prospects for developing cooperation with Lobachevsky University: "Huawei considers cooperation with universities as a whole: not only from the point of view of personnel training, but also in the aspects mentioned by Rector Elena Zagaynova, in particular in the aspect of applied research and development, which will not only serve to train personnel, but also to develop science. One of the options for expanding cooperation is to set up joint research laboratories, which can hire young researchers".

UNN Rector Elena Zagaynova, Vice Rector for Innovations Mikhail Shiryaev and Director of the UNN IITMM Victor Gergel addressed the forum participants.

Elena Zagaynova outlined the objectives of the university's interaction with IT companies: "Lobachevsky University is very much interested in interaction with representatives of the real economy, real companies, and in particular with IT companies. This is the key to our further successful development: we will be able to attract practitioners to teach and put together the right set of courses for students that will provide them with the competencies that employers require. The University is now a flexible institution, ready for any form of organisation of learning activities, and open to interaction with employers. We very much want the employers to come to the University as teachers, as customers of research and as partners in education and practical training for our students".