RUN-EU: SZE hosts leaders and students from eight universities

Széchenyi István University was host to the Presidents’ Meeting, the Management Committee Meeting and the Research Students' Week of the Regional University Network - European University (RUN-EU) from 25 to 28 April. The event brought together young people from eight countries to participate in short training programmes on the topical issues of digitalisation, sustainability and social innovation.

Established in 2020 as partners of Széchenyi István University, six European higher education institutions - the Universities of Leiria and Cávado-ave, Portugal, the Technical University of Shannon, Ireland, NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences, Netherlands, HAMK University of Applied Sciences, Finland, and the University of Applied Sciences, Vorarlberg, Austria - are members of RUN-EU. The members of the alliance aim to bring innovations to future higher education under the umbrella of the "European University" brand.

In the framework of the cooperation, three major events of the consortium’s members were held simultaneously on the Győr campus – the Presidents’ Meeting, the Management Committee Meeting and the Research Students' Week, with all institutions represented, including Howest University of Applied Sciences, Belgium, and the University of Burgos, Spain, both of which are currently in the process of fully acceding to the consortium.

Group photo of participants at the main entrance of Széchenyi István University (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

Group photo of participants at the main entrance of Széchenyi István University
(Photo: Csaba József Májer)

During the week, students from Ireland, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Finland, Austria, Belgium and Hungary took part in short training programmes on current topics such as digitalisation, sustainability and social innovation.

"Following EU guidelines, with the help of lecturers and specialists, the task was to develop potential research projects. We chose these three themes because they will be key areas for the next round of EU funding. We would like to thank Dr István Harmati, Associate Professor of the Department of Mathematics and Computational Sciences, Eszter Szombati-Serfőző, Director for Student Life and Services, Dr András Torma, Head of the Department of Applied Sustainability and Péter Németh, Research Assistant at the Department for their tremendous work in implementing the SAP Challenges. Parallel with the Students’ Week programmes, there was also running a short advanced programme on intercultural skills development, titled Who are we? – Mapping the identity of the RUN-EU-er, of which the in-person element was hosted by the Apáczai Csere János Faculty of Education, Humanities and Social Sciences. From our University, Dr Júlia Szőke, Dr Helen Sherwin and Dr Anikó Makkos participated as main organisers and lecturers, for which we are also grateful,” said Réka Kalamár, Head of Department in SZE’s Centre for International and Alumni Programmes.

The conference room of Széchenyi István University’s Management Campus was full for the opening ceremony of the short training programmes. (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

During the short training programmes, students learned and worked together on digitalisation, sustainability and social innovation (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

The students presented their results at the end of the programme (Photo: Csaba József Májer)


At the joint opening of the Presidents’ Meeting and the Management Committee Meeting, Prof Dr László Palkovics, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Széchenyi István University Foundation, gave a presentation on the model change in the Hungarian HE system, which has resulted in 21 universities being run by foundations. He stressed that the aim of the change, adopted based on successful international examples, was to make higher education more open to the needs of the economy, more closely and efficiently cooperating with companies, and operating on the basis of quality and performance. He added that this would provide the economy with more highly skilled professionals than at present, while increasing research, development and innovation capacity. Prof Dr Palkovics highlighted the significant developments at Széchenyi István University, such as the Science and Innovation Parks under construction in Győr and Zalaegerszeg, the Health Technology Campus in Győr and the recently inaugurated Smart Farm in Mosonmagyaróvár.

Dr Eszter Lukács, Vice President for International Affairs and Strategic Relations at Széchenyi István University, said that the Presidents’ Meeting concerned the future tasks to be implemented by the RUN-EU consortium, which are based on three pillars: education, research and third mission cooperation. "Alongside the further enhancing of teacher and student mobility, the follow-up will focus on micro-certificates and dual degree programmes, as well as mutually beneficial research and business partnerships," emphasized the Vice-President.

Participants of the Presidents’ meeting (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

In addition to the professional programmes, the guests visited the Audi Hungaria plant in Győr, toured the campus of Széchenyi University and were introduced to the continuously developing infrastructure of the University. In addition, together with the students, they became more familiar with the country’s culture at a Hungarian Evening.

The Hungarian Evening at Széchenyi István University’s Bridge Students’ and Teachers’ Club was a great success. (Photo: Kornél Szép)

More photographs of the week’s events are available on this link

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