Representatives of the University of San Beda in the Philippines study SZE’s operations

Two officials from the more than 120-year-old San Beda University in Manila have visited Széchenyi István University. Father Kelemen Sárai-Szabó, Prior of the Saint Maurus Benedictine priory in Győr, and University staff gave the representatives of the Philippines Benedictine institution a guided tour of the Győr campus.

Two representatives of the San Beda University, operated by the Benedictine order in the Philippines, Father Rembert Tumbali, Vice President for Finance, and Father Aelred Nilo, former Vice President for Administration, came on a study trip to Győr. The guests were introduced to the operation and best practices of the University by Father Kelemen Sárai-Szabó, prior of the Saint Maurus Benedictine priory in Győr and by the University's staff.

Representatives of San Beda University in the Philippines and Széchenyi István University on the Győr campus.

Representatives of San Beda University in the Philippines and Széchenyi István University on the Győr campus.

The various areas of specialisation, the collaborations established with the region's economy and industry, and the University's international relations were presented to the guests by Dr Tibor Dőry, head of the Management Campus Competence Centre, Dr Sándor Remsei, head of the Department of International and Applied Economics, Dr László Amand Palkovics, Professor in the Department of Plant Sciences, Márta Mészáros, head of the Centre for International Programmes and Alumni, Réka Borkai-Kalamár, head of the Mobility and Scholarships Unit and Paul Rogerson, International Coordinator.

"I met the fathers from the Philippines at an international training of the Benedictine Order in Rome. During our conversations, they introduced their San Beda University, and I told them about Széchenyi István University, and even invited them to Győr," recalled Father Sárai-Szabó. The prior added that the representatives of the Manila institution took this opportunity to visit the Győr campus, where staff presented in detail the University's education, infrastructure, and possibilities for cooperation.

"This visit could also be the beginning of an evolving partnership, and I hope we can find common points that would be beneficial for both institutions. This includes the mutual reception of students or joint research and project implementation by instructors," he mentioned. He also noted that the language of education at the Filipino institution is English, which facilitates collaboration.

"For Széchenyi István University, international relations are of paramount importance, as our community of around fourteen thousand students now consists of young people from seventy countries. With its pleasant environment, excellent infrastructure, high-quality, practice-oriented education and diverse student services, our University, listed in international rankings, welcomes international students," said Márta Mészáros, head of Széchenyi István University’s Centre for International Programmes and Alumni. She added that the institution pays great attention to strengthening partner relationships. She emphasized that this current visit is another opening, as through these partnerships new opportunities arise for joint participation in international projects and for cooperation, research and publishing possibilities for staff of both institutions.

"The representatives of San Beda University were especially impressed by our University's extensive corporate relations and the close cooperation established with them in the implementation of practice-oriented education. They also highly appreciated our University's innovation ecosystem, the Science Parks being developed and under construction, and the excellent infrastructure of our laboratories," revealed the head of Centre regarding the visit.

She highlighted that the staff of the Philippines institution were also interested in the internationalization experiences of the University of Győr’s professionals, as Széchenyi University's international strategy prioritizes East and Southeast Asia. "From this region, we have been welcoming students for years, including from Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Thailand. Additionally, we involve Hungarian young people in international mobility, not only via foreign scholarships, but also with the help of esteemed guest professors. For example, recently, Professor Christopher Teh Boon Sung from the highly ranked Universiti Putra Malaysia shared his knowledge with students of the Albert Kázmér Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences in Mosonmagyaróvár on topics of special interest to the University such as the environment and sustainability," she added.

Finally, Ms Mészáros stated that although the University has not had any institutional cooperation with the Philippines so far, they would be happy to expand their connections to this significant country in the region. "I hope that soon we can welcome students from the Philippines within the framework of the Stipendium Hungaricum programme, which for the last ten years has been playing an outstanding role in the internationalization of Széchenyi István University," concluded the head of Centre.

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