University of Szeged Undergraduate
The UNIVERSITY OF SZEGED is the successor of a university founded in Kolozsvár, Transylvania, in 1872. At the end of World War I, in accordance with the Paris peace treaties, Hungary ceded Transylvania to Rumania, and the university at Kolozsvár (present-day Cluj, Romania) moved to Szeged in 1921. From the beginning, the city of Szeged made great efforts to turn the town into a comfortable home for higher education. Many outstanding professors worked at the university in the inter-war period, including Nobel Prize winner Albert Szent-Györgyi, who was first to isolate vitamin C, extracting it from the Szeged paprika. After world war II, the University of Szeged was the first in Hungary to start functioning anew. In 1951, the Medical School was separated from the university and was established as an independent institution. In 1962 the University of Szeged took the name of the great Hungarian poet, Attila József, who was a student here in the 1920s.
In 1991 the leaders of the institutions of higher education in Szeged signed an agreement to merge these institutions into a unified, sizable center of higher education, to be called the University of Szeged. From 2000 the University of Szeged has been officially working, integrating 11 schools or faculties and teaching about 30,000 students.
At present the integrated new University has the following schools, or faculties: Arts, College of Agriculture, College of Music, Economics, Food Technology Engineering College, Law, Medicine, Sciences, Teacher Training College. The head of the university is the Rector, and each faculty is directed by a Dean. The full period of training for most students stretches over a minimum of four years. In Hungarian universities, as elsewhere in most of Europe, undergraduate and graduate studies are not formally separated but form integral parts of a unified curriculum leading directly to a diploma comparable to the American Master's degree.
Currently the number of full-time students is approximately 30,000; this makes the university the second or third largest institution of higher education in the country. Many of the students are accommodated in the five dormitories, with the rest preferring various types of private lodging. Cultural and recreational opportunities abound at SZTE. Some of these are provided by the university club (in the central building) and the extra curricular programs of the dormitories, others by the sports facilities, and the town's off-campus recreational facilities. There are also frequent folk-dance events, discos, film showings, and guest appearances. A number of independent cultural groups, such as the university choir, several amateur theater groups, the ensemble of folk dance, and various student circles help to produce a lively atmosphere in the university.
By now, the University's computer system is fully networked, and large labs are at the disposal of students to elecronically browse in the catalogues of the University Library, hook to the Internet, or surf on the World Wide Web. HUECESC has its own audio-visual and video equipment as well as a photocopying machine.
Outside the university, there are other institutions supporting research and scholarly activities. Especially remarkable among them is the Somogyi County Library (perhaps the Nation's most attractive modern library building, across from the Cathedral) with its collection of half a million volumes, including a special collection of valuable and rare books. English encyclopedias and handbooks, a large collection of classical music recordings, as well as a fine cafeteria make the library a popular place among visiting students.