As part of the closing events of the University of Pécs centenary program series, a Centenary Senate Meeting was held on 14 October, in the Senate Hall of the Rector's Cabinet. On this occasion, a plaque commemorating the opening of the first academic year in Pécs 100 years ago was unveiled as well.
"I can imagine how the colleagues gathered together 100 years ago," said Dr. Attila Miseta, Rector of the University of Pécs. "Those teachers and researchers who found a new home in Pécs after their existence in Bratislava (Pozsony) and the transitional period in Budapest faced greater challenges than we do now. It could not have been easy."
In connection with the integrated operation of the University of Pécs, Dr. Miseta pointed out the major developments that have taken place in the past 1.5 decades, not only at the infrastructure level. "I think it is important," he continued, "to think of ourselves as a team, to overlook each other's mistakes in a Christian spirit, and to strive to stay together, support talents, meet challenges and requirements. It is a pleasure that we can do all this in one of, if not the most beautiful cities in Hungary. Our predecessors always steered the ship of the university forward. I believe that with your help, we will be able to continue to do this."
Mayor Attila Péterffy welcomed the Senate on behalf of the city. "1923 was an eventful year in the world," he said. "Modern Turkey was born, Disney was founded, Psalmus Hungaricus was performed for the first time, and Zeffirelli was born. However, there is no doubt that the most defining event in the life of Pécs was when Minister Kunó Klebelsberg opened the first academic year of the Elisabeth University. This created an unbreakable bond between the city and the university. A bond that cannot be torn or broken by the storms of history or the events of current politics. I wish the university and the city many more celebrations, many moments to share."
"Those, who are present, know the history of this university well," emphasized Dr. József Bódis, rector emeritus and president of the UQF, who said: "The situation was not easier a hundred years ago, and yet, the key figures made the right decision. The decision to move the university from Bratislava to Pécs was certainly influenced by the fact of the university foundation in Pécs in 1367, even if the medieval university operated only for a short time, because in spirit, the university has been present in the city since 1367." Concerning the centennial, he stated: "The best way we can pay tribute to our predecessors is to define the future program of the university today in a way that it can also be celebrated a hundred years from now."
"Exactly 100 years ago, the Elisabeth University opened its first academic year in Pécs. Since then, higher education has been continuous in the city, and our institution has been welcoming those who want to learn as an integrated university for twenty-three years," said Dr. Tamás Fedeles, adding that it was no coincidence that the motto
"From the past to the future"
was chosen for the centenary program series, indicating that the celebration is also about openness to the future, in addition to commemoration of the past. He recalled that Bishop Gyula Zichy and Mayor Andor Nendtvich jointly contributed real estate to the operation of the Elisabeth University in Pécs, thus the study of law, humanities, and medicine could begin in the city. On this day 100 years ago, Rector József Halasy-Nagy and Minister Kunó Klebelsberg also gave speeches, which Dr. Tamás Fedeles quoted at length. In connection with the program series that lasted for over two years, he thanked Rector Attila Miseta and President József Bódis for supporting the program series and providing the financial conditions. He also thanked for the work of the Centenary Program Committee.
“The unveiling of the plaque today is one of the closing events of the centenary program series. The work hanging on the wall is a creation by Dr. Péter Lengyel, a sculptor and dean of the Faculty of Music and Visual Arts.
Happy birthday, University of Pécs!"
- Dr. Tamás Fedeles concluded.