Dnipro University of Technology

Dnipro University of Technology or DniproTech (Національний технічний університет ‘Дніпровська політехніка’; Natsionalnyi tekhnichnyi universytet ‘Dniprovs’ka politekhnika’). A university of a technical type and the oldest institution of higher learning in the city of Dnipro, founded in 1899 as Katerynoslav Higher Mining School.

Funded jointly by the central government of the Russian Empire, the city of Katerynoslav, and local entrepreneurs, Katerynoslav Higher Mining School opened its doors to students in September 1899. To be eligible to enrol, its students needed to have a secondary education, but in contrast to universities and institutes, the Higher Mining School was intended to train not academic scholars, but practical specialists for mining. The scientific research of its faculty members was closely linked to the industrial needs of the surrounding region. The school had two departments: mining and industrial. The full course of studies lasted three years and included such subjects as higher mathematics, analytical mechanics, applied mechanics, physics, electrical engineering, chemistry, mineralogy, architecture, drawing, and others. In 1903 one year was added to the course and the school was allowed to grant the degrees of a mining engineer and a metallurgical engineer (instead of the degrees of a mining and an industrial technician). The school thus received the status of an institution of higher learning. It began to publish its own periodical Izvestiia Ekaterinoslavskogo Vysshego gornogo uchilishcha (23 vols by 1917). It also hosted an editorial board of another periodical: Iuzhnyi inzhener (1912–7). Its enrollment reached 258 in 1905. Between 1903 and 1917 it trained 457 engineers, specialists in mining and metallurgy. The school’s own building was designed by the Kharkiv architect Oleksii Beketov and constructed in 1900–1901. In 1912 Katerynoslav Higher Mining School was reorganized as the Katerynoslav Mining Institute and named after Tsar Peter I. It became a major center of education, science, and culture in the extensive southern industrial region that included Southern Ukraine, the Oblast of the Don Cossack Host, and Caucasia.

The faculty members of the mining institute were also instrumental in founding in Katerynoslav two other institutions of higher learning: the higher courses for women and Katerynoslav University (established in 1918). After the Bolsheviks had taken over the city, they launched a series of dramatic changes in higher education. Because of an increased need for mining engineers in the coal mines of the Donets Basin and in the iron ore deposits of the Kryvyi Rih Iron-ore Basin, Katerynoslav Mining Institute (after 1926 Dnipropetrovsk Mining Institute, or DHI) was not only preserved but further expanded. In 1918 it added two departments: mine surveying (closed in 1921) and geological surveying. The mechanical faculty and workers' faculty were added in 1921. By the mid-1920s the institute had its own campus, including 35 research rooms, laboratories, and two libraries. It consisted of three faculties: mining (with mining and geological departments), metallurgical (with chemical engineering department), and mining-mechanical (with mechanical and electrical engineering departments).

The institute experienced a dramatic reorganization in 1930, when Dnipropetrovsk Metallurgical Institute was created on the basis of the metallurgical faculty of the mining institute, followed by Dnipropetrovsk Institute of Chemical Technology on the basis of the faculty of chemical technology (engineering). The existing mining institute was to train specialists only for coal-mining industry and prospecting works. In 1932 DHI had three faculties: mining, electromechanical, and geological-surveying. During the 1930s the institute was subjected to brutal Stalinist terror and purges and lost around 30 faculty members, including the institute’s own graduate, the dean of the mining-mechanical faculty Heorhii Yevreinov, the chair of mine surveying Ivan Bukhynyk, the chair of mining geometry and dean of the mining faculty Anton Gutt, the chair of hydrogeology and dean of the geological-surveying faculty Serhii Hembytsky, rector Pavlo Herasimov, and others.

During the Second World War the DHI was evacuated to Sverdlovsk and Karaganda, where its faculty joined the faculties of Sverdlovsk Mining Institute and Karaganda branch of Moscow Mining Institute. The latter was headed by the DHI rector Petro Nesterenko. DHI returned to Dnipropetrovsk in 1943, although its old campus was largely destroyed during the war. By the early 1950s the campus was finally rebuilt and a new faculty, mine construction, was added in 1951.

The 1960s saw a large reconstruction of the DHI campus, including the building of new study and research facilities, three multistory dormitories, and an athletic complex. The electrotechnical faculty was opened in 1962. In 1968 a tragedy struck, when 20 students died at a pop music concert due to the crush caused by the collapse of stair railings. In the mid-1970s the enrollment reached 8,000. During this time DHI concluded several cooperation agreements with large industrial enterprises of Dnipropetrovsk oblast, which gave rise to complex entities that combined education, scientific research, and industrial production.

In the 1990s DHI added social sciences to its faculty structure. In 1993 the faculty of economics was opened (reorganized in 2001 as the institute of economics). The faculty of law was added in 2001. In 1993 DHI was accredited as an autonomous state institution of higher learning under the name of State Mining Academy of Ukraine, which was granted the status of a national institution of higher learning in 1997. In 2002 it was reorganized as National Mining University, Ukraine’s leading school in the fields of geological prospecting, mining, fuel and energy production, machine-building, and automation of production. In 2017 National Mining University assumed its current name: National Technical University ‘Dnipro Polytechnic’ or Dnipro University of Technology (DniproTech), as it is known abroad. As of 2020 its student enrollment was 10,000.

DniproTech consists of five institutes: the humanities and social sciences; economics (with the faculty of management and the faculty of finance and economics); power engineering (with the faculty of electrical engineering and the faculty of information technologies); nature management; and interdepartmental institute of continuous education. It also has three separate faculties: mechanical engineering; construction; and natural sciences and technologies. DniproTech also operates four specialized secondary schools: Dokuchaiv mining tekhnikum, Pavlohrad tekhnikum, the motor transport tekhnikum, and Marhanets college. Also, it hosts several international cultural and educational centers, among them the Ukrainian-American Linguistic Center, the Ukrainian-German Cultural Center, the Ukrainian-Japanese Center, the Center of Ukrainian-Polish Cooperation, the Ukrainian-Spanish Cultural and Linguistic Center, and the Center for Ukrainian-Turkish Cooperation. There are also two dozen research and training centers, such as Gemological center; Research and Education Center of Geoinformation and Aerospace Technologies; Center for the Dynamics and Strength of Supporting Constructions of Artificial Structures in Mining-Metallurgical Enterprises; Center for Blasting Problems; Center of Mining Information Technologies; Center of Special Technologies of Machine Building; the Ukrainian-Polish Scientific and Educational Center of Radical Technologies; the Ukrainian-Turkish Scientific and Educational Center ‘Hirnicha sprava,’ and others. DniproTech’s scientific library is the oldest and the largest scientific library in Dnipropetrovsk oblast. Its earliest resources consisted of the collections granted to the library by professors of Katerynoslav Mining Institute, chiefly in the fields of mining, geology, and mechanics. The library also includes books printed prior to the 18th century, including ones in Latin, German, French, English, and other European languages. Today the library contains around one million volumes.

DniproTech has been consistently ranked among the best universities in Ukraine. For instance, in the independent academic ranking Top 200 Ukraine it has been ranked sixth in 2017, eighth in 2018, and twelfth in 2020.

DniproTech has published a number of periodicals in sciences and humanities, among them Naukovyi visnyk Natsional'noho hirnychoho universytetu (1998–), Ekonomichnyi visnyk Dniprovs'koї politekhniky (72 vols, 2003–), Humanitarnyi zhurnal (1999–2012), Zbahachennia korysnykh kopalyn (69 vols, 2003–), Hirnycha elektromekhanika ta avtomatyka (102 vols, 1965–), Rozrobka rodovyshch (2007–15), Sicheslavs'kyi al'manakh (7 vols, 2005–14), and Istoriia ta kul'tura Prydniprov’ia (2004-–16).

Pivniak, H., et al. Natsional'na hirnycha akademiia Ukraїny. Profesory 1899–1999 (Dnipro 1999)
Shvyd'ko, H. (ed.) Istoriia i suchasnist' Natsional'noho hirnychoho universytettu (1899–2009) (Dnipro 2009)
———. ‘Represovana pleiada vchenykh-odnolitkiv’ in Holub, I. (ed.) Moie Prydniprov’ia. Kalendar pam’iatnykh dat Dnipropetrovs'koї oblasti na 2010 rik: Metodyko-bibliohrafichne vydannia (Dnipro 2009)
———. Narysy z istoriї natsional'noho hirnychoho universytetu (1899–2015). Rektory (Dnipro 2015)
DniproTech official website: https://www.nmu.org.ua

Serhiy Bilenky

[This article was written in 2021.]

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