For the past 15 years, Mária Dudás has been very active in European work. Having recently celebrated her 65th birthday, she is the longest serving and most experienced coordinator in Hungary. ‘It has been a great pleasure for me since I have enjoyed every minute of my Erasmus work. I have tried to share this with everyone.’
For her, the greatest satisfaction has been the impact on students. ‘It helps them to gain knowledge, improve their self-confidence and make new friendships. It also helps them see themselves as European and improve their options in the employment market.’ With more than one 100 partnership arrangements, there are many opportunities for students to travel. And to support incoming students, she has encouraged the university to offer courses in German and English.
She has received many accolades and prizes for her international work, however some successes count more than others: ‘I was really proud when Erasmus celebrated two million students and the Hungarian representative was from my university.’ Helping students and her university to become more international has been an outstanding achievement. Activities such as an alumni association, ‘buddy’ systems, double degree programmes and accurate information for participants have all helped to promote mobility. And although ‘you cannot convince everyone, the original Guild Fellows knew that travelling to learn was essential – it is the same philosophy today.’
Óbuda University, Hungary (Óbudai Egyetem, Magyarország)
Institutional coordinator for Erasmus