The marked difference of culture and lifestyle between developing countries and Europe has made studying abroad a real challenge for eastern students specially those belonging to India and Pakistan. The students who are willing to or are presently studying in a European nation has to face differences in the perception of things, how people behave and obviously the food and lifestyle. Fortunately, with the establishment of prompt global connection the scenario is widely changed now. People are getting aware of the different cultures and foreigners are becoming compatible with the local residents.
There are not much Indians or Pakistanis in Hungary therefore eastern culture is quite alien for the local residents. Similarly, adapting European lifestyle is also challenging for the international student in Hungary.
For any international student, seeking higher education in a totally different atmosphere is quite challenging but most of the students willing accept these challenges because the benefits of studying in an international countries overlaps the challenges. Let’s explore the benefits and challenges of studying in Hungary for an international student.
Challenges of studying in Hungary:
The Limited Institutions:
Hungary is a small country with only 25 universities offering good degree courses Moreover Hungarian universities are not listed in the higher ranking even in world top range of 500. University of Szeged is the only university ranked by QS in 2017,501 to 550.
One of the key challenges a foreigner specially an eastern foreigner has to face in Hungary is the extremity of weather. Though it doesn’t often snow in Hungary, yet winters are very cold, as low as -10°C (14°F), and it would be difficult to survive in remote locations. The city areas are quite enjoyable at any time of year. The south of the country around Pécs is warmer on average, although the region has snowfall in winter. It is therefore necessary to have a research on the location you are going to stay prior flying to the destination. This will help you to get prepared in advance for the upcoming extremities
The Language Barrier:
Hungarian is the official and the most widely spoken language in Hungary. Most Hungarian citizens are not familiar with any foreign languages. Although English is spoken and is a medium of rendering higher education courses, but a few native people can speak or understand English. Moreover, part time job opportunities would be more inviting for students who are familiar with Hungarian language.
Racism in Hungary:
The population comprises a big fraction of xenophobe, homophobe or racist. Almost half of the Hungarian population has below average social status and they are quite orthodox in their beliefs.
Although there are many Halal restaurants in Budapest, serving cuisine from Egypt to Turkey and Syria, yet Pakistani restaurants are hard to find .Halal food restaurants are very few in the country side locations or in small cities. It would be difficult for a Pakistani student to dine out, therefore it is better to cook at home or buy foods that do not have meat.
Benefits of Studying in Hungary:
Despite all these challenges, international students, especially from Pakistan are still flying to Hungary for seeking higher education because:
Hungary is not one of the favorite study abroad destinations for international students this means a student has to face less competition for getting admission. Hungarian Government offers many functional scholarship programs which made it easier for a foreign student to complete their higher education in one of the European nation.. Hungarian universities would offer reasonable scholarships to attract international students.
Unlike other well-known European destinations, Hungary offers quality degree program in the lowest cost both for living and studying.
Hungarian universities generally conduct courses in Hungarian language but there are several institutions where English is the medium of instruction. Furthermore, there are some universities in Hungary that give you admission without the restriction of appearing in the English language proficiency tests like IELTS or TOEFEL.
Though it is difficult to get a job but still you can apply for a part time or full time job while studying in Hungary .If you are competent enough then you can get the work visa and residency in Hungary to pursue your career. After getting the work and resident permit you can access all Schengen States.