11. September 2023. 10:10

On 11 September, the University of Miskolc welcomed its first-year students as full citizens at a ceremonial Senate meeting to open the academic year. At the event, János Csák, Minister of Culture and Innovation, spoke about the partnership between the state and higher education, the academic and institutional freedom of universities and the responsibility of intellectuals.

"Higher education is a strategic investment and the Hungarian state sees it as a strategic investor. It has made significant improvements following the restructuring of the universities' maintenance in order to acquire and utilise competitive knowledge," said János Csák, Minister of Culture and Innovation, in his speech at the opening of the academic year. He recalled that, in addition to the two and a half times increase in the budgets of the model universities, the state has also contributed to infrastructure investments. These include the construction of a library and data analysis centre at the University of Miskolc, the renovation of dormitories that have been completed or are in the process of being completed, and the financing of the infrastructure needed for the 2024 Summer European University Games.


János Csák, Minister for Culture and Innovation


In addition to providing the financial backing for these investments, the state has changed the rules by giving the management of higher education institutions more powers to exercise academic and management freedom. As a result, a third more students are starting their studies in Hungarian higher education this year, and 40% more have applied to the University of Miskolc than last year. "This result shows that this university has a reputation and attractiveness," the minister said.

The state's expectation of universities is that they should provide students with competitive knowledge, which will be reflected in higher education rankings and the attractiveness of universities. Strengthening innovation capacity is also an important requirement, so that knowledge can one day become a product, a patent or an innovation. The state is also building on the economic, social and intellectual impact of higher education, with the aim of having at least one Hungarian university among the world's top 100 by 2030.

Welcoming the first-year students, Prof. Dr. Zita Horváth, Rector of the University of Miskolc, recalled that August 2020 was a milestone in the life of the university: the model change took place, the universitas became a state-supported private university.

"The graduate career tracking system operated by the Education Office confirms the high quality of our professional work. More than 70 percent of our graduates stay in the country and can find a job within a short time, which means that the University of Miskolc clearly plays a major role in retaining intellectuals," said the Rector. The value of the academic work at the University of Miskolc is also demonstrated by the fact that it has been ranked in two prestigious international rankings, but he said that the challenge remains to achieve even stronger results.


Honorary Doctorate awarded to Prof. Dr. Gerald Wilhelm by the Rector of the University of Miskolc, Prof. Dr. Zita Horváth


"As a family and student-friendly university, we do our utmost to ensure that our university citizens enjoy excellent learning and working conditions. We cherish the traditions of Selmec, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Now you, our first-year students, are part of this wonderful community-building tradition, which gives us strength," said Prof. Dr. Zita Horváth. As a signpost to the new students, she added that being a graduate is not only a privilege, but also a responsibility and a duty, a model for shaping the future of society.

During the Senate meeting, an Honorary Doctorate was awarded to Prof. Dr. Gerald Wilhelm. József Ábel, Ms Dezső Gurka, Ms Edit Margit Csizmás, Mr János Juhász and Mr Tamás Tompa were awarded Ph.D. degrees, and the PRIMUS scholarships of the Faculty of Law and Political Sciences were presented.