If it’s April, it must be SZEN – an unforgettable experience for SZE students

"I couldn't end my time at university without one last SZEN" - perhaps this sentence says it all about what the Széchenyi University Days mean to students, and this year's event was another great success. In this article, we attempt to do the impossible: summarise the most interesting programmes, recall the experiences and try to capture the essence of the festival in a few paragraphs for those readers who were unable to attend what was undoubtedly the most anticipated student event of the semester.

Last week the campus of Széchenyi István University was even noisier than usual, because, as is well known, student days were underway at the institution. This long-standing event with a festival concept has been organised for almost a decade now by the Students’ Union and the University in a joint production. The focus is on entertainment in the evenings, complemented by energizing and relaxing activities during the day - similar to EFOTT.

Organisers made sure to get the students moving, so sport is an essential part of SEN. It is hard to pick just one sport, as there was something for everyone, from e-sport to wall climbing and kite flying.

If you walked around the different venues, you could see students playing sport everywhere. SZEN is the perfect opportunity to test strength and skill against each other in a playful way, but also to discover new sports - not to mention the obvious joy of movement.

SZEN2022Sporting activities are an indispensable part of the SEN. (Photos by Tamás Baranyai, Martin Csete, Réka Gyergyói, Enikő Szabó - Helix Student Events Office)


Turning to the daytime programmes: it would not be far from the truth to say that, alongside the traditionally popular teddy bear making, marriage is the most popular with students.

Of course, there's no way that it’s real marriage either, with the couple pledging their allegiance for just a week. Yet how many couples are sealed by the fumbling registrar and how many budding romances are born in front of witnesses! Some people symbolically tie the knot with their best friend, but there have also been examples of people getting married with their newly bought drink. Who wouldn't want to get married in a relaxed atmosphere with friends? A good time is always guaranteed.

Quizzes, games, curiosities: that is what the daytime programmes at SZEN were all about. (Photos by Márton Horváth, József Csaba Májer)


It is no secret that the biggest attraction of SZEN are the evening performers. As we wrote in our previous article, the organisers have tried to please everyone within the available budget, so each day will feature a different performer and DJ from the national (and this year for the first time international) music scene.

Amongst the many concerts and parties, silent disco was a big hit with the audience, which is an unusual experience as it is not often that you get to enjoy music with your peers through headphones in a normal nightclub.

As usual, there were three channels of different styles to choose from, and they filled the tent in the courtyard of the Bridge Student and Teacher Club all night long.

Our portal was also curious to find out how festivalgoers experienced the past days, so we asked a number of former and current students what attracted them to the SZEN programme. Two things are clear from the responses: the pandemic is still having an impact, with many people attending for the first time after a two-year gap, and many eager to let off some steam from their studies and work, and SZEN has the potential to break the monotony of everyday life.

"I've been at university for three years and I've never experienced what university days are like. There was no question that I wanted to be part of it," said Dominik Kapui, who is studying mechanical engineering at Széchenyi István University. "My studies are going well, so it’ possible this is my last chance to try it out. I couldn't end my career here without one last SZEN," he said.

As a graduate engineer, Bence Kőszegi has a different perspective: "There are few university programmes where you can meet up with former fellow students or even current colleagues. It's hard to schedule barbecues and Wednesday parties around work, and there are few such events at weekends. That's why I think SZEN is great. This year we have had messages from several people that they will be there this weekend, and let's meet up. Many people travel up to two hundred kilometres to be together. Of course, I have a friend who I was angry with because they didn't come, saying they were having a tough week. I think they regret it," he laughed.

"The programmes during the day lifted my spirits, the university finally came alive, and the Dormitory Studio also brought great music," said Tünde Pap. The IT student considers it positive that she could participate in a festival that lasted several days in the university environment, in a homely atmosphere. "SZEN never disappoints, and I meet a lot of friends and colleagues. I didn't think too much about the performers, I would have been there anyway," she added.

The atmosphere in the tent set up in the courtyard of the Bridge was great. (Photo by József Csaba Májer)

So, that's what this year's University Days were like. A week of sports, games and fun at its best.

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