Széchenyi István University helps Syrian students who started a family

Széchenyi István University is not only home to outstanding academic achievements and successful career paths, but often plays an important role in the private lives of students as well. This was the case for two young Syrians, Maria and Bassel, who came to Győr on scholarship as spouses and became a family. The institution supports them in completing their studies.

Széchenyi István University has a growing international student community, with students from seventy countries around the world. The institution strives to help students in every way it can, including in the case of special situations such as those of two young Syrians, Maria Sioufi and Bassel Farah. The former started her studies at Széchenyi University in September 2021 as a Stipendium Hungaricum scholarship holder, studying for a Master's degree in Infrastructure Engineering. Her husband, Bassel Farah, followed her a year later, in the same field of study, under the Scholarship Programme for Christian Young People. The couple welcomed their beautiful daughter Emmanuella a month ago and they couldn't be happier.

Maria and Bassel with their one-month-old baby Emmanuella (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

When they applied for the scholarships, they specifically targeted Széchenyi István University and Győr, as after extensive research they found that this institution and this city best suited their plans. The couple say they are surrounded by friendly and thoughtful people, and the locals are welcoming. They have grown very fond of Hungary and Győr in particular.

They are both very satisfied with the quality of education at the university and they believe that being a student at Széchenyi István University is a unique experience, not only professionally but also personally. Comparing their experience with their undergraduate education in Syria, Bassel emphasized that here at Széchenyi István University students can participate in interactive classes where they can develop their presentation skills and gain useful practical knowledge. "At Széchenyi, everything is better: the infrastructure, the dormitories, the lecturers and all the staff at the university. Our voice is being heard here and the students are not treated as a number. We are surrounded by a supportive atmosphere where we feel that every question counts and we are approached with openness and helpfulness," he said.

The young husband also plans to complete a doctorate at Széchenyi István University, and the wife would like to return to the classroom as soon as possible to finish her studies. They are happy to have the support of the institution.


Staff of the Centre of International Programmes and Alumni at Széchenyi István University - Márta Mészáros, Sylvia Kinga Páli-Nyiri and Nikolett Bartha - presented a gift to the family on behalf of the institution (Photo: Csaba József Májer)

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