Milestone: Széchenyi István University inaugurated two new buildings in the ZalaZONE park

Széchenyi István University continues to strengthen its role in the ZalaZONE Park in Zalaegerszeg, next to the most modern automotive test track in Central Europe. Another important step in this direction was the inauguration of two new buildings of the institution in the presence of Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade and member of the Board of Trustees of the Széchenyi István University Foundation. In connection with this event, the university signed a cooperation agreement with the Bosch Group in Hungary.

The aim of the Centre for Innovation and Training of Széchenyi István University in Zalaegerszeg is to contribute to the competitiveness of the region by creating an internationally high-quality education and research environment. To this end, the institution is developing its science and innovation park in Zalaegerszeg with HUF 4 billion of EU funding, supported by the government. This includes an innovation and accommodation building, which were inaugurated on Monday in the ZalaZONE park. The ceremony was also attended by Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade, member of the Board of Trustees of the Széchenyi István University Foundation, László Vigh, Member of Parliament for Zalaegerszeg, and Zoltán Balaicz, Mayor of Zalaegerszeg.


The incubation and accommodation building of Széchenyi István University in Zalaegerszeg was inaugurated (PHOTO: MTI/ISTVÁN FILEP)


The innovation building has rooms for research, development and testing, but it also has an educational laboratory, community room and offices. All this opens up space for start-ups, innovative business ideas and collaboration between students and companies. It also allows students to strengthen their practical skills and to practice certain processes in a business environment. The other accommodation building, comprising 12 rooms and two apartments, will accommodate staff working at the university’s research centre in Zalaegerszeg, visiting researchers, student teams and trainees.


2 photo: Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó speaks at the inauguration of the incubation and accommodation building of Széchenyi István University in the ZalaZone Science and Innovation Park (Photo: MTI)


"There is competition between countries to attract more investment, especially in times of crisis. In the final analysis, the supply of highly skilled professionals for development is a crucial factor, so Hungary's future depends heavily on its universities. Recognising this, Széchenyi István University is the only higher education institution in Hungary to buy land and develop it next to Europe's largest automotive test track. In this way, it will now enrich this unique ecosystem", said the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó.

"The strategic goal of Széchenyi István University is to strengthen its international competitiveness. For this reason, we are pleased that our investments in ZalaZONE and the environment that encourages the knowledge economy are helping to develop our innovation ecosystem. The R&D and innovation partnership with companies in technology-driven industries present in ZalaZONE supports these efforts. This is how our institution can become a true university of technology", said Dr. Erzsébet Knáb, President of the Board of Trustees of the Széchenyi István University Foundation.

"The developments of our university in Zalaegerszeg contribute to an even closer link between industry and academia, which is a new and extremely important role for higher education institutions in the 21st century. This innovative strength is the key to our future and at the same time it strengthens the national economy to a great extent", emphasised Dr. Bálint Filep, President of Széchenyi István University.

"The handover of the first two buildings of the University’s Innovation and Training Centre in Zalaegerszeg, together with the modern laboratory environment and the direct connection to the test track, offers an unparalleled opportunity for our developments in the field of self-driving transport and drone technology. In addition, the workshops of the innovation building will be open to students in dual training, trainees and young people planning future mobility, even with their own businesses, blending into the university ecosystem," said Tamás Kolossváry, head of the centre.

In addition to the inauguration of the two new buildings of Széchenyi István University, the foundation stone of the Bosch Research and Development and Testing Centre was laid on Monday in the area directly adjacent to the ZalaZONE test track. The complex will play an important role in the company's research and development ecosystem, which aims to create a close partnership between the worlds of industry and technology and academia. This joint work is also reinforced by the Memorandum of Understanding signed at the ground-breaking ceremony by Dr. Erzsébet Knáb and Dr. Bálint Filep on behalf of Széchenyi István University, and by Dr. István Szászi, Head of the Bosch Group in Hungary and the Adriatic Region, and András Kemler, Managing Director of Robert Bosch Kft. responsible for technical areas and site operations. Under this agreement, the parties will expand their cooperation in both education and research and development.

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