Széchenyi 2020
Budapesti Corvinus Egyetem ×

Talent Development


    In 2013/2014, with the participation of two professors (K. Megyeri and E. Berlinger)
           and a couple of students at Corvinus University, we carried out a small scale
      program that aimed to help a few very poor and disadvantaged Roma high school
   students to gain access to higher education. When designing the program, we followed
  the recommendations of Professor Barr by demystifying the university, raising the students’
  aspirations, and improving their school attainments especially in Mathematics and English.
 The program relied mostly on university students who served as teachers and personal mentors.
           This was a pilot project with just four Roma high school students as participants.
    Finally two of them, Noémi Lakatos és Imre Roland have been admitted to the business and
                           management Bachelor program of Budapest Business School.
                This year we are following and extending the program to 8-10 participants.

               Access to the HE: It can be seen international comparative statistics that it is the tertiary

              education where private benefits are the most significant in terms of income, employment,

             health,life expectancy    and overall life satisfaction. Therefore, the safest road to liberation

                  from poverty leads through highereducation. As Professor Barr convincingly argues,

              if a well-designed student loan system exists in a country, access to higher education is

             essentially determined by the high school achievements. Therefore, if we wish to ensure

               equal opportunities for the poor, we have to go back at least to high school to improve

            the system. School system in Hungary: According to the latest PISA Report, in the Hungarian

               school system it is practically impossible for poor students to perform well in school and,

               as a consequence, they are almost completely excluded from higher education, especially

                        from those degrees that lead to high personal returns in later life.If we rank 65

                   developed and emerging countries according to the ability of the school system to

                   smooth out social differences, we find that Hungary and Peru are by far the lowest

                     ones down on this list. This is a shame for the country, as well as a huge waste

                      of human resources. Focus on mathematics: We are convinced that mathematics is

                        the most useful and the most transferable subject. It is reflected also in the fact

                         that the most valuable degrees require high level math knowledge and problem

                      solving skills not only at the entrance exam, but all along the educational program.

                       However, due to the adverse selection tendencies in the underfinanced Hungarian

                              school system, it seems that poor children of poor little villages have

                                                             the greatest disadvantage just in maths.

                        Focus on independent work: In line with improving mathematical performance

                     we also wish to develop corresponding skills such as focusing, time management,

                           career planning, communication and most importantly independent learning.

                       Therefore, the program is organised such a way that students come to Corvinus

                        University of Budapest once in every 2 weeks and spend whole Saturday with

                     learning and practicing maths. At the end of the day they receive a well-defined

                     homework: about 100-150 exercises to solve for the next time. During the 2 weeks

                    we keep contact by email and phone, students have to report continuously on their

              progress and they are encouraged to ask their mentor for help if they have any problems.

             Each time they come to Budapest the costs of traveling is reimbursed and they also receive

                      a scholarship depending on their achievements. The preparatorycourse begin

                                     in November and lasts until May.   For more information, email to

                                    krisztina.megyeri@uni-corvinus or

                        Finance: The first year of operation was supported from the generous donation

                               of Földfém Limited Co. via the Foundation of the Department of Finance,

                   Corvinus University of Budapest. The basic principal of financing was that teachers,

                 mentors and administrative staff received neither payments nor cost reimbursements

                    for their work. Funds were spent solely on scholarships to students, traveling costs of

                   students and other materials helping students such as books, calculating machine etc.

                   Cooperation with civil sector: During the program we are closely cooperating with civil

                         organizations, most importantly: Polgár Foundation for Opportunities helps in

                                        contacting and selecting the participants all over the country.

                   The foundation has the mission to improve the life chances and circumstances of disadvantaged,

                          especially Roma communities and individuals. It aims to support the cause

                        for equal opportunities for all, searches and follows new paths and makes

                                                         efficient use of available funding.

                           Dr. Ámbédkár High School helps also in recruiting and motivating participants.

                     The school’s mission is to gather and help the most disadvantaged, mostly Roma students

                     to finish the elementary school, then the high school in one of the most distressed areas of 

                            Hungary (county Borsod-Abauj-Zemplén) based on the philosophy of Gandhi.

                                     Studium Generale provides seminars and learning materials.

                         The organisation’s main goal is to help underprivileged students. Studium Generale offers

                        courses in mathematics, economics and history to graduating and pre-graduate high school

                       students free of charge in preparation for their Matura exams. Preparation takes place in the

                              form of week-end seminars and e-learning courses for student all over Hungary.

                     Rajk László College for Advanced Studies (in Hungarian: Rajk László Szakkollégium)

                                                          offers a one-by-one mentorship program

                    The College is an educational institution offering accommodation as well as advanced courses in

                       the fields of economics and social sciences, establishing a community for students excelling in

                           these fields. It was founded in 1970 by the students of the Corvinus University of Budapest

                              (then Karl Marx University of Economic Sciences), with Attila Chikán as its first principal.

                             It is the oldest existing institution of the kind in Hungary, giving a model to later colleges.

                                  Central European University organises communication exercises in English.

                          CEU is a graduate-level “crossroads” university where faculty and students from more than

                          100 countries come to engage in interdisciplinary education, pursue advanced scholarship,

                                                           and address some of society’s most vexing problems. 

                                  Dr. Ámbédkár High School at Sajókaza

            Mentoring and preparing for the high school graduation at Sajókaza

Students admitted to the Budapest Business School (Budapesti Gazdasági Főiskola)

Noemi Lakatos
Roland Imre

Doing Math at Corvinus University of Budapest

A high school student participating in the prepartoy course in Mathematics 2014/2015
    comes from a little village where she takes care of animals in a farm of her family.
                           She has a strong commitment to become economist.

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