In 2009, at the age of 16, I entered the actual MekhMat faculty of MSU, which is one of the top math departments in Russia and has many prominent professors who are world-class mathematicians. After math school, I was already familiar with some basic notions of higher mathematics, so it was not very difficult for me to be a freshman at MekhMat. This gave me a bit
of extra time, which I invested into attending advanced courses at the Independent University of Moscow (IUM).
In my sophomore year, we had to choose a scientific advisor. At that time, I already knew the late Professor Vinberg and had read his amazing textbook A Course in Algebra. I wanted to choose him as my advisor. However, just to be sure, I forced myself to doubt my choice, and attended various special seminars on algebra, geometry, number theory, and probability. Finally, all my doubts completely disappeared when in Spring 2011 Vinberg gave a fascinating special course "Discrete groups of motions". Thus, starting in Spring 2011 and until my PhD defense in 2019 at HSE, Ernest Borisovich Vinberg was my scientific advisor. It's worth mentioning that in 2014 I graduated with honors from MekhMat MSU, and in 2018 I finished my post-graduate study at MSU.
Let me say a few words about my advisor. Professor Ernest Borisovich Vinberg was a great mathematician and a kind person. He is widely known for his fundamental results and breakthrough discoveries in discrete subgroups of Lie groups, Lie groups and algebras, as well
as in invariant theory, representation theory, and algebraic geometry. To this day, I am very grateful to Vinberg, whose encouragement, constant help and precious advice were so important for me over the years. On the photo below he is playing with my son Sasha.