The University of Miskolc is a special place from the viewpoint of student life. There is a system of traditions reaching back hundreds of years, called the Selmec Traditions (or sometimes mining/forestry/metallurgical student traditions). The traditions stretch back to the 1700s, to Selmecbánya, where the mining engineering course began. An important feature of the system is that the new students do not face the challenges of university life alone; freshmen can choose students who already have two years of experience to stand beside them to help them overcome obstacles, whether they are related to their studies, to administrative matters or other matters. In many cases this choice leads to a bond lasting a lifetime.
Learning and practicing the student traditions also offers the chance to develop relationships with others. Within this community there are opportunities to get to know not only fellow students, but also alumni of the Faculty who are now employed in industry. Alumni join students in various events, as does the teaching staﬀ. All participants have shared experiences and memories, and this contributes to getting to know each other more smoothly and naturally.
Numerous events offer chances to gather as a community, from student traditions to sports, recreation, and events to popularise science.
Freshman camp. This is a chance for new students to meet upperclassmen and be introduced to the campus and student traditions. The week is stuffed full of both informative and entertaining events, and Faculty students compete against each other.
Balek training. There is training and an exam for students wishing to participate in the student traditions of Selmec. Upperclassmen initiate the newcomers (balek) to the traditions of the mining students.
Faculty sports day. Groups complete in friendly matches held in a variety of sports throughout the day (football, darts, etc.), but some students prefer to compete by cooking lunch in a cauldron over an open fire.
MEN. This is a three-day festival held on campus. It features plenty of concerts, but also sports and other contests between the students of different faculties to determine who wins the honour of becoming ‘student rector’.
ISW – International Student Week. The Faculty is a member of the International Federation of Mining, Metallurgy, Petroleum and Geology Students, which regularly organises international student weeks where the students can become familiar with what other universities and also companies operating in the target countries. This network allows our best students to participate in international student exchange, testing their knowledge in new surroundings and broadening their perspectives.
The Student Research Society (TDK) competition is of particular important in our efforts to encourage talented students. Both the number of students participating and their results are impressive. Each year 30–40 independent research projects are presented, of which roughly half go on to the national competition (OTDK), held every two years. In addition, we organise the National Earth Science Student Conference for secondary school students, where winners also gain the right to take part in the OTDK.
Four international professional organisations operate student chapters within the Faculty: AAPG (American Association of Petroleum Geologists), SPE (Society of Petroleum Engineers), EAGE (European Association of Geoscientists and Engineers) and SEG (Society of Economic Geologists), where we share a student chapter with geology students from another Hungarian university, ELTE.
WOULD YOU HAVE GUESSED THAT…
…the mining engineering course established in Hungary was the first higher education programme in engineering in the world?
…mineralogy professors of the Institute of Mineralogy and Geology were the first in the world to discover seven new minerals?
...over 650 active mines are registered in Hungary, producing about 80 million tonnes of mineral raw material each year? Our mining and geotechnical engineering graduates also find jobs in industrial blasting and tunnel construction, and this is the only place in Hungary with such an engineering programme.
…the amount of municipal waste per person in Hungary is over 450 kg/year (2.5 m3) and most of it goes to landfills? Our environmental engineering programme is the only one in the nation to be based on the fields of engineering and earth science.
…when we ‘mine’ our cities, we can collect many critical raw materials and rare metals from waste that are used in products like telephones and tablets? Engineering studies in raw material processing are available nowhere else in the country.
…the current capacity of underground natural gas storage in Hungary covers more than half of the natural gas we use in a year? No other European country can say this. The only master programme in petroleum engineering in Hungary is found here in Miskolc.
…petroleum engineers deal not only with fossil fuels but also with producing and using geothermal energy, which contributes to building a greener future? The petroleum engineering programme taught in English gives our students a head start in the international job market.
…groundwater has become the most important source of drinking water around the world? Here in Hungary, 97% of our drinking water comes from underground. Our hydrogeology engineering programme is unique in Hungary.
…the most modern remote sensing devices (drones, satellites and sensors) are being used in the geography MSc programme for complex natural and human geography analysis? Our BSc programme in geography includes an engineering perspective.
… the geographical centre of Europe is in Hungary, more specifically in Tállya, determined by experts in 1992?
WHY THE FACULTY OF EARTH SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING?
Storage Facility Chief
Pusztaederics Underground Gas Storage Facility
“Looking back after 12 years, I can say that choosing to spend my university years at the University of Miskolc and in the Faculty of Earth Science and Engineering was the best choice I could have made. The community spirit, with students and teaching staff doing things together, is quite different from most universities. The campus is also incomparable. I would recommend it to anyone; the knowledge, memories, and people formed the basis of the life I have now.”
Dr. Tamás Fancsik
Director, Geological and Geophysical Institute of Hungary
“The university environment is like soil, where we are planted as either viable and unviable ‘seeds’ and form ourselves in what we will become during the rest of our lives. The more time we spend in an untended field, the more opportunities we lose and the fewer chances we have to nurture the talents that we have. In its traditions and its present, its modern equipment and its well-prepared teachers, the University of Miskolc provides an ideal intellectual and professional environment for every student to grow and to become a specialist.”
Dr. Viktória Gável
Head of Certification Office, Cemkut Kft. (Cement Industry R&D)
“The Faculty of Earth Science and Engineering of the University of Miskolc oﬀered me considerably more than the standard engineering course, since I was able to acquire an engineering perspective that was supplemented in a special way with a sound knowledge of materials. This particular combination of engineering and natural sciences means knowledge that is competitive around the world, which continues to form a solid basis for my further professional development.”
Dr. Tamás Hámor
Scientific/Technical Support Officer, European Commission, DG JRC – Joint Research Centre
“There are mining engineers and geologists in earlier generations of my family, which is why I decided to pursue studies in geology. The universities worthy of serious consideration in the ﬁeld were Eötvös Loránd University and the Technical University of Heavy Industry (today, the University of Miskolc). The second school was known for its industrial viewpoint, applied geology and engineering approach, and for its unique campus and student life. Finding employment was not a problem for any of my class. While there were times when my career came to a standstill, those were the times when I experienced most strongly the helping hand of my alma mater, whose moral support was more valuable than any ﬁnancial aid. I am proud to be able to contribute to the next generation and to our nation as a visiting lecturer at the University of Miskolc.”
Logistics Manager, MARS Magyarország Kft.
“That I choose the University of Miskolc in 2002 is something I consider the best decision of my life so far. The level of the teaching staff at the Faculty of Earth Science and Engineering, the culture of nurturing student traditions, the attitude of teachers towards students – all these make it stand alone, and have a positive effect on personality development. I think that the community was part of what helped me stand out from my workmates, in terms of knowledge and mentality, and led to my promotions in the workplace. A Miskolc student always trusts another Miskolc student. This feeling of belonging together is symbolised by the ring we get before graduation, which opens doors to other ringwearers, older and younger alike.”
Waste Pre-Treatment and Wastewater Management Facility Plant Manager, EMK Kft.
“I started my studies at the Faculty of Earth Science and Engineering in 2002. I chose to specialise in process technology, since I could already see the opportunities in this profession. In today’s world, which needs ever more energy but is also becoming more environmentally oriented, it is vital to use and develop technologies that reduuce our use of primary raw materials. On the day before my final exam I got a job offer from the company I had done my internship at. I became an operations engineer at the industrial wastewater treatment facility, and after six months they trusted me to run the whole facility. The knowledge I obtained here contributed greatly to my ability to do my job well. I still have professional ties with my teachers at university, and sometimes turn to them with questions.”
Zsombor Ádám Marton
Vice President, E&P, MOL Magyarország; President, Hungarian Mining Association
“The best thing about the University of Miskolc is that it teaches you not just the lessons but how to live! What was true in my time, and is still true today, is that the student traditions form a stable foundation and humility, renewal and innovation lead to endless possibilities in the future.
No matter where life may take me, I am proud and pleased to say that the friends I made here, the community and the campus will be with me for life!”
Dr. László Szabó
Technical Director, Duna-Dráva Cement Ltd.
“The professional knowledge that has accumulated since its establishment in Selmecbánya has brought international recognition and job oﬀers to mining engineers who have graduated from the University of Miskolc. The degree in mining engineering opened a gate to the world. I was able to join a professional community that actively participates in the international innovation process, so that its results can also be utilised in Hungary.”
Prof. László Csaba Szarka
Full member of HAS, researcher (retired)
“Looking back from fifty years on, I believe that my decision to apply to the geophysics engineering programme at Miskolc turned out to be a good one. We learned that geophysics is characterised by the strict laws of physics and the broad view of geology at one and the same time. Our mission is to aid in learning more about the complex processes in and around the Earth and by using the precise measurements and concepts of physics.”
Dr. Gábor Zelei
Managing director, Hungarian Mining and Metallurgical Society
“Starting from the Szabó József Geological Secondary School, it was obvious to me that I wanted to continue my studies at the University of Miskolc. Our teachers and professors not only provided us with the subject matter, but also prepared us to always be able to carry on despite changing circumstances. The Selmeci traditions formed a framework for our lives that we can always depend on, and the sense of belonging will accompany us throughout our lives. I warmly recommend the Faculty of Earth Science and Engineering at the University of Miskolc to all interested students!”