About the Faculty
The Dr Lazar Vrkatic Faculty of Law and Business Studies is an accredited institution of higher education providing undergraduate and graduate study programmes in Law, English Language, Security and Crime Science, and Business Psychology. There is also a graduate course available in Psychotherapy.
Over more than ten years, its outstanding teaching staff, modern approach to teaching and care for the students have established the Faculty as a leading independent academic institution in the country.
It employs over 100 full-time and part-time professors and assistants in five study programmes. The student body numbers approximately 1,400 divided between two teaching centres in Novi Sad and Nis. Since 2006, over 2,000 students have graduated from the Faculty, and almost half of them have received master's degrees.
Instruction takes place in accordance with the Bologna Declaration. We cultivate the principle of studying and working in small groups, with emphasis on practical application. The facilities in Novi Sad and Nis are up-to-date and adapted to the needs of the individual study programmes.
In addition to regular classes, we organise various lectures, forums and conferences which are of considerable benefit not only to our students but to the broader academic community. Extracurricular activities have made the Faculty a forum for the exchange of ideas, a place that encourages scientific approach, conversation and debate on important social issues.
To date, the Faculty has published over a hundred textbooks, monographs and periodicals in social science and the humanities.
Our particular focus is on care for our students. Our goal is to provide them with a top-level education, help them to reach their full potential and prepare in the best possible manner for their future careers.
The Dr Lazar Vrkatic Faculty of Law and Business Studies commenced operation on 1 October 2006 in the building of the former Privredna Banka AD in Novi Sad – on the corner of Miletic and Grckockolska streets. Professor Vrkatic’s idea was that a reputable institution could only be housed in a building that would do justice to its aims and aspirations. The choice fell on one of the finest neo-baroque buildings in Novi Sad. Initially, only the left-wing facing onto Grckoskolska Street was leased, but as the number of students increased, two years later this was expanded to occupy the entire building.
Licenses to engage in education were issued by the Provincial Secretariat for Science and Education. The various study programmes – Law, Business Psychology, Business Management, Corporate and Civilian Security Management, and English Language, all received licences. However, since these were valid only until accreditation, from the outset the Faculty concentrated on attaining the quality, standards and levels of teaching stipulated under the Law on Higher Education. The effort soon yielded the desired results. On 12 April 2008, the Commission for Accreditation and Quality Assurance issued an accreditation certificate, making the Faculty the first private institution of higher education in Serbia, having met all requirements in terms of technical, academic and personnel standards. Following accreditation as an institution, approval was also given for all study programmes at undergraduate and graduate levels.
Teaching also took place outside the Faculty headquarters: in Nis, where a building was rented at no. 17 General Milojko Lesjanin Street located in the city centre. Parallel to Novi Sad, preparations went ahead for the accreditation of the higher education unit in Nis, which was also accredited as the first of its kind in the country.
The underlying idea of the founder, Professor Vrkatic, was to ensure that high-achievers would be rewarded for their efforts, thus stimulating them to further endeavours, while others would be encouraged to see that acquiring knowledge was useful, desirable and could be profitable. At the same time, an award system was established for incoming freshmen, that is, students with excellent high-school records who choose to enrol at the Faculty, and others coming from foster care or children’s homes. Professor Vrkatic believed this would demonstrate that the Faculty placed a value on the previous work and commitment of students who had endeavoured to excel even at secondary school.
Following the tragic death of Professor Vrkatic, in June 2008 his family decided to establish a foundation in his name that would continue his pioneering mission, preserve the memory of his work as an academic and pedagogue, and above all honour his humanity. The Professor Dr Lazar Vrkatic Foundation today awards three types of scholarships: the first for the best high school graduates, the second for the best students at the Faculty, and the third for the best graduates from the Republic of Serbia in the field of philosophy. The Foundation’s intention is to promote the ideals of Professor Vrkatic, including his belief in the great intellectual and cognitive potential of young people through their work in education and training while encouraging knowledge and research as a way to personal improvement and contributing to broader social and humanitarian efforts. Scholarship certificates are traditionally awarded on Faculty Day, 12 February.
As the Law on Higher Education envisages re-accreditation every five years, the Dr Lazar Vrkatic Faculty of Law and Business Studies became the first re-accredited institution in Serbia on 21 June 2013, while gaining a complete “new look”. Namely, at the beginning of 2011, an opportunity arose that was not to be missed: the Faculty responded to an offer from Intesa Bank to purchase the building at 76 Bulevar Oslobodjenja, so the summer semester of the 2010/2011 academic year began in a new, well- equipped building.
The Faculty operated as an independent institution of higher education up to 2014, when it was decided to integrate it with the Union University of Belgrade. The benefit was mutual - the University welcomed a prestigious and reputable institution, and the Faculty overcame administrative problems related to its name.
During the re-accreditation cycle (2013-2015), the Commission for Accreditation and Quality Assurance issued certificates for undergraduate and graduate courses in the following study programmes: Law, Business Psychology, English Language, and Security and Crime Science, the latter being re-accredited under its new name (formerly Corporate and Civilian Security Management). Business Economics and Psychotherapy were accredited later, and are to be re-accredited once the five-year period expires.
Preparations also went ahead for the accreditation of scientific research activities. Having fulfilled the criteria and terms stipulated under the Rules for Evaluating Scientific Research Work, on 10 March 2015, the Committee for the Accreditation of Scientific Research Organisations of the Republic of Serbia approved the Faculty for research work in social science and the humanities, specifically - Law, Psychology, Economics and English Language.
During the ten years of its existence, 2,006 students graduated with a BA degree, of whom 891 went on to receive an MA. The Faculty has remained in close contact with most of them, helping them build successful professional careers. The Faculty has joined the First Chance Programme of the National Employment Service, which enables the most successful students to gain initial work experience at the institution from which they graduated.
For its contribution to the community in the field of education and social activity in general, the Dr Lazar Vrkatic Faculty of Law and Business Studies has received many awards, among them the Captain Misa Anastasijevic Charter, the Ljubomir Ljuba Stojic Award, a Letter of Appreciation from the National Bank of Serbia, and others.
Lastly, reflecting upon the first ten years of its existence, the Dr Lazar Vrkatic Faculty of Law and Business Studies does not consider it has reached the end of its path "per Aspera ad Astra". On the contrary, it will have to face the many challenges ahead, but with confidence in its ability to overcome them and in the spirit which has guided it so far.