Saint Petersburg State University

Discover the notable alumni of Saint Petersburg State University. The list includes people like Katerina Tikhonova, Andrey Arshavin, Ivan Turgenev, Nikolai Gogol & Pyotr Stolypin. This list of notable alumni is loosely sorted by popularity and has people from different domains of life, such as writers, intellectuals & academics, leaders, miscellaneous and media personalities etc.
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 1 
Ayn Rand
(Writer and Philosopher Known for Her Best-Selling Novels ‘The Fountainhead’ and ‘Atlas Shrugged’)
Ayn Rand
46
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: February 2, 1905
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Died: March 6, 1982

Ayn Rand was a Russian-American philosopher and writer. Apart from publishing two best-selling novels, Ayn Rand is credited with developing a philosophical system called Objectivism. Over the years, Ayn Rand has been a major influence among American conservatives and libertarians. Some of the famous personalities influenced by her include Amber Heard, Vince Vaughn, Jimmy Wales, Ayelet Shaked, and Mary Ruwart.

 2 
Vladimir Putin
(President of Russia (2000 - 2008, Incumbent Since 2012))
Vladimir Putin
438
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: October 7, 1952
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

The current President of Russia, Vladimir Putin is a popular politician, with the highest approval rating of any leader in the world as of July 2020. As a high-level politician who has the support of his citizens, he is a powerful figure in world politics. He has been accused by human rights organizations of persecuting political critics and activists.

 3 
Anatoly Karpov
(One of the Greatest Chess Players of All Time)
Anatoly Karpov
6
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: May 23, 1951
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Zlatoust, Russia

Russian chess grandmaster, Anatoly Karpov, was the official world champion from 1975 to 1985, before finally being defeated by Garry Kasparov. With over 160 first-place finishes, Karpov is widely considered one of the greatest players in history. Since his retirement, he has involved himself in several humanitarian causes. He has an extensive stamp collection.

 4 
Mariya Putina
(Russian Pediatric Endocrinologist and Eldest Daughter of Russian President Vladimir Putin)
Mariya Putina
94
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: April 28, 1985
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Maria Vorontsova, the eldest daughter of Russian president Vladimir Putin, is a pediatric endocrinologist and Putin's advisor in genetic engineering. She has also co-written a book on idiopathic stunting in kids. She is currently a PhD candidate at Moscow’s Endocrinology Research Centre and is married to Dutch entrepreneur Jorrit Faassen.
 5 
Peter Kropotkin
(Anarchist, Socialist & Historian)
Peter Kropotkin
4
Birthdate: December 9, 1842
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: February 8, 1921

Russian philosopher Peter Kropotkin was a passionate advocate of anarcho-communism. He was also an activist, revolutionary, economist, and sociologist. He was arrested and imprisoned for his activism in 1874. However, he managed to escape and lived in exile for over 40 years in different countries across Europe. He returned to Russia after the Russian Revolution in 1917. 

 6 
Alexander Alekhine
(Russian-French Former Chess Champion)
Alexander Alekhine
3
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: October 31, 1892
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Died: March 24, 1946

Alexander Alekhine was a French and Russian chess player renowned for his imaginative and fierce attacking style. He also possessed great positional and endgame skill, which he used effectively to reign as the World Chess Champion from 1927 to 1935 and then from 1937 to 1946. Also a theoretician, Alexander Alekhine innovated several opening variations, including the Alekhine's Defence.

 7 
Pavel Durov
(French entrepreneur who is best known for being the founder of the social networking site VK and later of Telegram Messenger)
Pavel Durov
0
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: October 10, 1984
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
 8 
Alexander Kerensky
(Minister-President of the Russian Republic (September 1917 - November 1917))
Alexander Kerensky
8
Listed In: Lawyers & Judges
Birthdate: May 4, 1881
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ulyanovsk, Russia
Died: June 11, 1970

Alexander Kerensky was a Russian revolutionary and lawyer who played a major role in the Russian Revolution of 1917. Alexander Kerensky is often portrayed in films and TV series. In the 1971 epic historical drama film Nicholas and Alexandra, he was played by John McEnery. In the 2019 series The Last Czars, he was portrayed by Kestutis Cicenas.

 9 
Dmitry Medvedev
(Prime Minister of Russia from 2012 to 2020 and President of Russia from 2008 to 2012)
Dmitry Medvedev
8
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: September 14, 1965
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Dmitry Medvedev, the Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council, has also been the prime minister and president of Russia. Born to teacher parents, he was an intelligent child and began studying his father’s encyclopedia in third grade. He is known for his support of the nuclear disarmament treaty.

 10 
Mariss Jansons
(Conductor)
Mariss Jansons
4
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: January 14, 1943
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Riga, Latvia
Died: November 30, 2019
 11 
Ksenia Sobchak
(Host of the Reality Show 'Dom-2' on the Russian channel TNT)
Ksenia Sobchak
3
Birthdate: November 5, 1981
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Ksenia Sobchak is a Russian TV anchor, journalist, actress, socialite, and public figure. The daughter of popular Russian politicians, Sobchak achieved popularity when she started hosting the popular reality TV show, Dom-2. In 2018, at the age of 36, she was chosen as the Civic Initiative's presidential candidate, becoming the youngest presidential candidate in the history of Russia.

 12 
Katerina Tikhonova
(The Second Daughter of Russian President Vladimir Putin)
Katerina Tikhonova
42
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: August 31, 1986
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Dresden, Germany

Katerina Tikhonova is a Russian acrobatic dancer who finished fifth at a world championship event held in Switzerland in 2013. The daughter of Vladimir Putin, Tikhonova serves as director of the National Intellectual Reserve Centre (NIRC) and National Intellectual Development Foundation (NIDF), which are initiatives of Moscow State University.

 13 
Dalia Grybauskaitė
(4th President of Lithuania (2009 - 2019))
Dalia Grybauskaitė
8
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: March 1, 1956
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Vilnius, Lithuania

Dalia Grybauskaitė became the first female president of Lithuania and the first to be re-elected. Popularly known as Lithuania’s Iron Lady and often compared to Margaret Thatcher, she has also been the UN Commissioner of the Year. A black belt in karate, she has mastery over four languages.

 14 
Viktor Korchnoi
(Soviet-Swiss Chess Grandmaster)
Viktor Korchnoi
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: March 23, 1931
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Died: June 6, 2016

Viktor Korchnoi was a writer and chess grandmaster. He is widely regarded as one of the best players never to have achieved the World Chess Championship title. He played chess until old age and became the oldest player to be ranked in the top 100 players list when he won the World Senior Chess Championship in 2006 at age 75.

 15 
Julius Martov
(Russian Revolutionary and Prominent Menshevik Leader)
Julius Martov
2
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: November 24, 1873
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Constantinople, Turkey
Died: April 4, 1923

Russian revolutionary and politician Julius Martov was a prominent leader of the Mensheviks. A close associate of Vladimir Lenin since his initial political career, he later clashed with Lenin’s ideology of limiting party membership to an exclusive group. He spent his finals years in Berlin as an editor of Socialist Courier.

 16 
Olga Buzova
(Russian Singer and Media Personality)
Olga Buzova
1
Birthdate: January 20, 1986
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Leningrad, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 17 
Anatoly Sobchak
(First democratically elected mayor of Saint Petersburg)
Anatoly Sobchak
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: August 10, 1937
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Chita, Russia
Died: February 19, 2000
 18 
Alexander Stepanovich Popov
(Russian Physicist Who Was One of the First Persons to Invent a Radio Receiving Device)
Alexander Stepanovich Popov
1
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: March 16, 1859
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Krasnoturinsk, Russia
Died: January 13, 1906

Alexander Stepanovich Popov was a Russian physicist best remembered for his pioneering work in transmitting radio signals. One of the first inventors to come up with a radio receiving device, Popov's work was contemporaneous with the groundbreaking work of Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi. Popov's life and career inspired the 1949 biographical film Alexander Popov which was directed by Herbert Rappaport.

 19 
Andrey Markov
(Mathematician)
Andrey Markov
2
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: June 14, 1856
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Ryazan, Russia
Died: July 20, 1922
 20 
Nikolai Gogol
(Russian Novelist, Short Story Writer and Playwright)
Nikolai Gogol
107
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: April 1, 1809
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Velyki Sorochyntsi, Ukraine
Died: March 4, 1852

Nikolai Gogol was a Ukrainian author who redefined Russian literature with his novels such as Dead Souls and his short stories such as The Overcoat and Diary of a Madman. Most of his works were influenced by Ukrainian folklore. He was typically fond of the grotesque as a literary element.

 21 
Alexander Friedmann
(Physicist and Mathematician Best Known for His Pioneering Theory That the Universe Was Expanding)
Alexander Friedmann
2
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: June 16, 1888
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: St. Petersburg, Russia
Died: September 16, 1925

Though born to a ballet dancer father and a pianist mother, Alexander Friedmann grew up to be a talented mathematician and cosmologist. He had served as an aviator during World War I and later also taught. He died of typhoid at age 37 after eating a pear during his honeymoon.

 22 
Osip Mandelstam
(Poet)
Osip Mandelstam
1
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: January 14, 1891
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Warsaw, Poland
Died: December 27, 1938
 23 
Peter Svidler
(Russian Chess Grandmaster and an Eight-Time Russian Chess Champion)
Peter Svidler
1
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: June 17, 1976
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Russian grandmaster Peter Svidler had started playing chess at age 6. Initially mentored by Andrey Lukin, he later grew up to win the Russian Chess Championship eight times. However, in spite of competing in three World Championship tournaments, he never won the world title. He now appears as a chess commentator.

 24 
Sergey Nechayev
(Revolutionary)
Sergey Nechayev
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: October 2, 1847
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ivanovo, Russia
Died: December 3, 1882
 25 
Viktor Shklovsky
(Novelist)
Viktor Shklovsky
0
Birthdate: January 24, 1893
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Died: December 6, 1984
 26 
Dmitri Ivanovsky
(Russian Botanist, the Co-Discoverer of Viruses and One of the Founders of Virology)
Dmitri Ivanovsky
1
Listed In: Scientists
Birthdate: October 28, 1864
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Gdov, Russia
Died: June 20, 1920

Best remembered for his co-discovery of viruses during his research on the mosaic disease in tobacco, Russian botanist Dmitri Ivanovsky is regarded as one of the pioneers of virology. Interestingly, following his discovery, he didn’t focus on virology much and taught plant anatomy and physiology instead.

 27 
Nikolay Chernyshevsky
(Critic)
Nikolay Chernyshevsky
0
Birthdate: July 24, 1828
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Saratov, Russia
Died: October 29, 1889
 28 
Sergei Ivanov
(Chief of the Presidential Administration of Russia from 2011 to 2016)
Sergei Ivanov
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: January 31, 1953
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Russian politician Sergei Ivanov has been the Special Representative of Russian President Vladimir Putin on issues related to the environment, the ecology, and transport, since 2016. He has previously also been the First Deputy Prime Minister and the Russian minister of defense. A polyglot, he can speak Norwegian and French, too.

 29 
Boris Grebenshchikov
(Musician)
Boris Grebenshchikov
0
Listed In: Musicians
Birthdate: November 27, 1953
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
 30 
Mikhail Vrubel
(Painter)
Mikhail Vrubel
1
Birthdate: March 17, 1856
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Omsk, Russia
Died: April 14, 1910

Mikhail Vrubel was a Russian painter best remembered for his expertise in all genres of art, such as painting, graphics, theatrical art, and decorative sculpture. At the start of the 20th century, his art became an integral part of Art Nouveau. In 1905, Mikhail Vrubel was honored with the title Academician of Painting.

 31 
Valentin Glushko
(Engineer)
Valentin Glushko
1
Listed In: Engineers
Birthdate: September 2, 1908
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Odesa, Russian Empire
Died: January 10, 1989
 32 
Aleksandr Ulyanov
(Russian Revolutionary and Elder Brother of Vladimir Lenin)
Aleksandr Ulyanov
4
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: April 12, 1866
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Nizhny Novgorod, Russia
Died: May 20, 1887

Russian revolutionary Aleksandr Ulyanov was the elder brother of Vladimir Lenin, who founded the Soviet Union. Though initially not interested in politics, he later became involved in St. Petersburg student politics and was part of a plot to kill Alexander III. He was hanged along with four of his comrades.

 33 
Vladimir Bekhterev
(Russian Neurologist and the Father of Objective Psychology Known for Noting the Role of the 'Hippocampus' in Memory)
Vladimir Bekhterev
2
Birthdate: January 20, 1857
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Sorali, Russia
Died: December 24, 1927

Neurologist and psychiatrist Vladimir Bekhterev is best remembered for his research on the brain and conditioned reflexes and for his pioneering research on objective psychology. He taught at institutes such as the University of Kazan and was also known for his rivalry with contemporary Ivan Pavlov.

 34 
Nikolay Nekrasov
(Poet who Introduced Ternary Meters and the Technique of Dramatic Monologue into Russian Poetry)
Nikolay Nekrasov
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: December 10, 1821
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Nemyriv, Ukraine
Died: January 8, 1878

Russian poet Nikolay Nekrasov established himself as a successful businessman before stepping into writing. He bought and developed the magazine Sovremennik, or The Contemporary. Most of his poems, such as Red-Nosed Frost, spoke about the misery of the peasant class. He also introduced the dramatic monologue to Russian literature.

 

 35 
Georgy Chicherin
(Revolutionary)
Georgy Chicherin
1
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: November 24, 1872
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Tambov Governorate, Russian Empire
Died: July 7, 1936
 36 
Nikolai Kondratiev
(Russian Economist Known for His Contributions to 'Business Cycle Theory' Known as 'Kondratiev Waves')
Nikolai Kondratiev
0
Birthdate: March 4, 1892
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Galuevskaya, Russia
Died: September 17, 1938

Russian Soviet economist, statistician and proponent of the New Economic Policy (NEP) Nikolai Kondratiev, one of the early leading figures of Soviet economics, is best remembered for the business cycle theory called Kondratiev waves. Major works of Kondratiev include The Grain Market and The World Economy and its Conjunctures During and After the War.

 37 
Tatyana Kazankina
(Russian Athlete and Olympic Gold Medalist)
Tatyana Kazankina
0
Listed In: Sportspersons
Birthdate: December 17, 1951
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Saratov Oblast, Russia
 38 
Svetlana Kapanina
(Pilot)
Svetlana Kapanina
1
Listed In: Miscellaneous
Birthdate: December 28, 1968
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Shchuchinsk, Kazakhstan
 39 
Alexei Kudrin
(4th Chairman of the Accounts Chamber)
Alexei Kudrin
0
Birthdate: October 12, 1960
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Dobele, Latvia
Height: 5'10" (178 cm)
 40 
Diana Arbenina
(Singer)
Diana Arbenina
1
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: July 8, 1974
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Vałožyn, Belarus
Height: 5'5" (165 cm)
 41 
Dmitry Merezhkovsky
(Russian Novelist and Poet)
Dmitry Merezhkovsky
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: August 2, 1866
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Died: December 7, 1941
 42 
Valery Durov
(Philologist, Educator)
Valery Durov
0
Birthdate: July 13, 1945
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
Height: 5'9" (175 cm)
 43 
Tatyana Tolstaya
(Writer)
Tatyana Tolstaya
0
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: May 3, 1951
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia
 44 
Valery Leontyev
(Soviet-Russian Pop Singer and Actor)
Valery Leontyev
2
Listed In: Singers
Birthdate: March 19, 1949
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Ust'-Usa, Russia

Valery Leontyev is a Soviet and Russian singer who achieved fame during the 1980s. Counted among the most important artistes of Soviet and Russian music, Leontiev was honored with the People's Artist of the Russian Federation title in 1996. Leontyev is also one of the most decorated artistes and is often referred to as a legend by the Russian media.

 45 
Ivan Kalyayev
(Poet, Revolutionary)
Ivan Kalyayev
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: July 6, 1877
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Warsaw, Poland
Died: May 23, 1905
 46 
Vasily Dokuchaev
(Russian Ecologist and Geologist Who Conducted Path-Breaking Research on Soil Science)
Vasily Dokuchaev
0
Birthdate: March 1, 1846
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Milyukovo, Russia
Died: November 8, 1903

Russian ecologist, geomorphologist, and soil scientist Vasily Dokuchaev initially taught at the University of St. Petersburg and was later associated with the Novo-Aleksandr Institute of Agriculture and Forestry. He developed a soil classification system that explained the 5 factors for soil formation. The city of Dokuchaievsk in Ukraine is named after him.

 47 
Roy Medvedev
(Political Writer)
Roy Medvedev
2
Listed In: Writers
Birthdate: November 14, 1925
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgia
 48 
Boris Groys
(Art Critic)
Boris Groys
1
Birthdate: March 19, 1947
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Berlin, Germany
 49 
Galina Starovoytova
(Politician)
Galina Starovoytova
0
Listed In: Leaders
Birthdate: May 17, 1946
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Chelyabinsk, Russia
Died: November 20, 1998
 50 
Konstantin Ernst
(Producer, Writer)
Konstantin Ernst
1
Birthdate: February 6, 1961
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia