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Out of school learning
Of course it is, to a certain extent. On the other hand, only attending lectures is not enough to get a good job and start a career. More and more students realize they need something more which makes them visible among the others, which gives them something extra apart from their studies. Many student-organizations and programs, which we have already introduced before, such as AIESEC or Erasmus, can help in it. The following initiative is called BEST, which addresses specifically students of engineering. Although earlier, we have already given a short summary of the courses of BEST, now you have the chance to get to know the organization better.
The student-run organization operates in Hungary at the Budapest University of Technology and at the University of Pannonia, Veszprém. All around Europe, it is present in 95 higher education institutions with engineering education. The aim of BEST is to broaden students’ horizon through developing their skills and organizing engineering competitions. There are many topics we don't talk about during our studies, although they could be very important to help our professional placement or to build our career.
BEST offers three programs: students can participate in 10-day courses abroad, in engineering competitions, or in career-related trainings. Everybody can apply who is learning engineering and would like to spend his/her free time during the university years useful. Furthermore, to be a BEST member, you don't necessarily have to be an engineer; within specific frames, students from other faculties can also join the work of the association.
The applicants can join different engineering and career-related courses in each season, but it is obligatory to attend an engineering education. The language of the programs is English, and it is required for the application to write a motivation letter and answer a bunch of questions. Each time, 22 students are selected for the 10-day courses by the local BEST committees.
Emese Kocsis, the Vice President for Marketing and External Relations of BEST Budapest also took part in a course connected to nanotechnology in Moscow. She told us, "there is no need to have big knowledge about a specific topic; the essence of the "basic courses" is to give an overview about a field. These programs are different from an ordinary university education; among others, it expands the knowledge of students by visiting factories and carrying out design tasks, small project works, and high quality presentations in an international environment." Since the participants come from different cultures, the youth can experience how it feels to work with different nations. In the future, this could mean a huge advance for those who want to work in an international company.
The course fee is very student-friendly; the €15 participation fee covers the costs of accommodation, three meals a day, and all the programs. Students only have to pay their travel costs.
During the Engineering Competition, students have to deal with case studies and specific engineering tasks. It is worth to join the contest because the winners can participate in the regional competition, and if they succeed again, in the international round. It is a great opportunity to gain more knowledge, experience, and to build your social network. Furthermore, companies can search for student CVs in the BEST database, and they like to offer internship opportunities for the most talented ones. From that matter, engineering competitions at the Budapest University of Technology have been supported by many big companies such as Videoton, MOL, Continental and P&G.
Emese explained that like every organization, they also have a big vision: "BEST would like to achieve that people from different cultures with different backgrounds accept each other, help each other mutually, and be able to work together - all the programs contribute to this. Additionally, beside the professional knowledge earned at the university education, it is important to improve personality, soft skills and abilities of the students."
Let's joint to contribute to the aims of BEST!