The Lomonosov Moscow State University, established in 1755, is regarded as one of the leading universities in Russia. Since its founding and into the present day, the university has been a center of academic life in the country. The MSU is one of the two Russian universities featured in international academic rankings. More than 40,000 students currently attend the MSU, 20% of them foreign nationals. The university comprises 39 departments, 15 scientific research institutes, 4 museums, 6 branches, about 380 sections, a Science park, a Botanical garden, a Science library, a publishing and printing house, a Cultural center, and a boarding school.
Mikhail Lomonosov is considered to be the founder of the MSU, which has been named after him since 1940. The university originally consisted of three departments: philosophy, medicine, and law. Every student would begin their education as a philosopher and then choose a specialty later on. In pre-revolutionary Russia, all citizens regardless of class were allowed to enlist in the University. Many outstanding scientists and statesmen were educated within the walls of the MSU, including 11 Nobel prize laureates such as B.L. Pasternak, L.D. Landau, A.D. Sakharov and M.S. Gorbachev.