„Control your destiny or someone else will”

Fourteen foreign students received their university degree documents at the graduation ceremony held in English language at the beginning of July.

„I do hope that you have spent great years in Budapest, Hungary, and that we have provided you with all the opportunities to develop yourselves professionally and also make friends for life” – these were the words with which János Józsa, new rector of BME said goodbye to the fourteen foreign students who had participated in the English language degree programme of the university. „Most of you obtained BSc degrees and I trust that many of you will continue your studies for the MSc level – either at our university or some other institutions. When you return to your home countries in some aspect you will be ambassadors of Hungary and BME. If we can be for your help with something in the future, please do not hesitate but feel free to contact us or return to us – we will always be happy to see you again!”, added the leader of BME, who greeted graduating foreign students for the first time in his new role.

„You all know how hard it is to spend years away from your families,” said Zita Csaba, head of the mentors. „During this time you have developed a lot and now you are much stronger than you used to be: you had to make decisions on your own, take care of your needs, in other words you have grown up. You are now different persons and you can all be proud of what you have achieved!”

The Budapest University of Technology and Economics has been offering English language degree programmes on BSc, MSC and PhD levels since the 1980’s. During the past decades some 5000 students graduated in these programmes and further 3000 have studied a few semesters at the different faculties in the framework of student mobility or exchange programmes; all faculties of the university have English language courses.

In this term nearly 870 students have participated in the English language programmes; this number includes Erasmus students and students arriving for partial training courses with tuition fee. 280 students have attended the regular university programmes.

Students are coming from all continents of the word: in large numbers from Brazil (222 students), the USA (41), Cyprus (38), France (69), Greece (20), Iran (92), Mexico (21), Germany (32), Nigeria (43), Italy (15), Portugal (16), Spain (47), and Turkey (58) but the university has students from Monaco, Cape Verde and Tanzania as well.

From among the graduates two electrical engineers, Wang Cheng and Dima Chanis received Certificates of Merit for their excellent results. The latter gave the farewell speech on behalf of the graduating students. “Older students told us how difficult it would be to get to this point; it can take more years than we planned until we get our degrees and some others even said that we may want to give it up. Luckily we have all proven that they were not right. We are here, we can celebrate the results of our efforts and we can enjoy this moment of success”, said Dima Chanis from Syria. “Some of us will continue their studies; others will start their working careers. In all cases we will all follow the university’s main values: knowledge, integrity and freedom.”

The graduation ceremony was closed with László Dvorszki, Director of International Affairs’ quoting words of Jack Welch, former director of GE: “Control your destiny or somebody else will!”

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Photos: Ildikó Takács