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It was in the last century. Next summer, a student construction team (MTR) was created at the institute, and our hero was appointed commander.

This movement originated in the mid-1950s and seems to have stalled in the early 1990s, when it became clear that the country no longer needed to build anything, and if necessary, funds could be mastered without students. The school of student groups made a great contribution both to the formation of self-thinking leaders and specialists, brought a lot of money into the pockets of poor students (not so poor, compared to today).

Before the departure of all the commanders of the detachments, they were gathered in the committee of the Komsomol of the institute and acquainted with the construction objects. It was common practice to pre-deploy large leaders of construction detachments (commander and chief of staff of the consolidated MTR of this university) to the field. The goal is to get acquainted with the construction sites, therefore, information on preliminary coordination of the volume of work and their cost, with an estimate of the expected salary for the units, were (should be) more or less reliable. What did not protect, however, from surprises, which everyone guessed without words, is risk management, as it is called in management.

This time, apart from the usual requirements, recommendations and notations regarding behavior and responsibility, as well as the preservation of the approximate in all respects appearance of Soviet students on the basis of prohibition, something new was said. Namely: the decision of the Komsomol committee was communicated to all commanders – to provide material assistance to the construction of a new gym of the institute, which has already begun and has advanced significantly.

For fighters of construction teams, this was expressed in the amount of about half a month’s stipend, which was met with indifference by the entire command corps (it was easy to deduct from funds that were still not in the pockets). And our hero was calm. Although he did not attend any Komsomol meetings, he went in for sports and, in principle, was for such help, hoping to practice in the new hall before graduation. By the way, for information, the price of this, built over three years, a fully-fledged gym with a swimming pool would correspond to the price of about 50-100 meters of an average highway today.

It was stated that raising such funds for unit commanders should not be a problem. Each commander was told how much he should personally bring to the headquarters as voluntary donations from the soldiers of his unit (the number of soldiers in the squad should be multiplied by the average contribution). It was also said that the commanders who ensured the implementation of this decision will themselves be encouraged additionally, and under these conditions all the agreements of the top leadership of student groups will be respected.

The detachment set off on a train, in a packed reserved seat carriage, on conditional virgin soil, to a distant city. They were met in the construction department, under which several more detachments from this institute worked, headed by the commander of the consolidated unit, and transported them to the construction site, to a large state farm along with the construction superintendent.

They worked well, from morning to late evening, including all Saturdays and Sundays, with the exception of August 9 – the great holiday – Builder’s Day. On this day, the squad leader understood to the end the limits of his authority. He tried to keep Prohibition in an acceptable framework, but he did not (even though none of the fighters seemed to have money), although there were no serious incidents, and some broken faces in a completely won confrontation with the local lads did not into account.

When everyone settled down, thinking late at night with his deputy in the dining room over a glass of soup that there was power and what its limits were, the commander, given the students ’reaction to the topic“ commander is a fighter in the framework of Prohibition, ”suddenly realized that to raise money from all at the gym just will not work. Rather, you can still get from your group, and even not from everyone (and this is only the third part of the squad). From students of other groups – it is already very problematic. But he did not particularly bother with this prospect, let it be as it will be …

They worked together, the object grew before our eyes, in addition to the main ones, the detachment also performed a number of additional works. A couple of days before the end of the work, the commander and foreman went to the department to arrange all the orders, interest, and so on, to summarize the work and calculate the squad’s earnings.

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