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Cultural Shock or Adventure?

Foreign students in Budapest not only bring back knowledge, they immerse themselves in Hungarian culture during their time here. Join us as we explore the vibrant corridors of Corvinus University, filled with cultural diversity that enhances the student experience. If you're curious about university life and the allure of Budapest from a foreign perspective, this article is a must-read!

Corvinus University has always been popular among international students, with a wide range of English-language programs, numerous scholarships, and extensive global partnerships. To dive deeper into the everyday lives of these students, I had the pleasure of chatting with individuals from diverse backgrounds, including Palestinian-Italian, Panamanian, Tunisian, Italian, Ecuadorian, Brazilian, and Colombian students. In their stories they all mentioned the cultural richness, atmosphere and central location that Budapest offers.

Embarking on a journey to a new city or country always brings expectations. Our respondents were overwhelmingly positive about Budapest, delighted by its architectural wonders and captivating charm. However, some were surprised by the cost of living, which turned out to be higher than expected. 

Since they arrived in Hungary, students encountered misconceptions, navigated bureaucratic mazes, and tried to adapt to Hungarian eating habits. They were initially puzzled by cultural nuances like loud nose-blowing and reserved behavior. Yet, they embraced the challenge, learning to appreciate Hungarian customs and flavors.

Initially, some struggled with Hungarian culinary customs, due to their unique flavor, making seasoning dishes a challenge. Even now, it's difficult for them to find their favorite Middle Eastern, spicier spices, which are common in Tunisia. However, over time, they discovered local markets and their wide range of gastronomic offerings, while the unfamiliar flavors gradually became more familiar as time passed. Initially, students were skeptical about the intensive use of paprika in dishes, so it took them a while to get used to its constant presence. Mixing paprika with other spices became an interesting chapter in their culinary adventures, highlighting how much Hungarians love this tasty ingredient.

Understanding the Budapest public transportation system and maps also took time for students, but they quickly grasped the local transportation culture. Weather was also a topic of discussion, the cold winter weather and snow were unusual for some of them. In fact, some saw snow in Budapest for the first time in their lives. One student highlighted the diversity of Hungarian holidays and traditions. The December Christmas markets and the lights of downtown Budapest represented something entirely new and wonderful, revealing a new aspect of the city. They discovered the warmth behind Hungarian reserve, forming deep connections with locals eager to share their culture.

I urge everyone to embrace cultural diversity. Despite the challenges, cultural immersion fosters growth and meaningful connections. For foreign students at Corvinus University, it's not just about earning a diploma, it's also about creating lifelong memories and experiencing the world's cultural mosaic.

Integration into a diverse environment enriches the student experience, offering valuable lessons and growth opportunities. Try to immerse yourself in conversations with other students, learn about their cultures, and share yours – because university is about embracing diversity and building connections.

Of course, the transition to a new environment inevitably comes with its share of surprises, and for foreign students at Corvinus University in Budapest, the journey is no different. From the lively hallways of academia to the enchanting streets of the city, each day brings forth a new discovery, a new challenge, and a new opportunity to grow.

At Corvinus University, diversity is not just celebrated; it's woven into the very fabric of campus life. With students coming from all corners of the globe, the university is a melting pot of cultures, ideas, and perspectives. From the lively debates in lecture halls to the vibrant cultural events on campus, every interaction is an enriching experience.

But beyond the confines of the university lies the city of Budapest – a treasure trove of history, art, and culture. For foreign students, exploring Budapest is like a grand adventure, with each street corner offering a glimpse into the city's rich heritage. From the majestic architecture of Buda Castle to the charming cafes of Pest, the capital never fails to amaze.

Amidst the trials and challenges, there are moments of pure joy, moments that make it all worthwhile. Whether it's bonding with classmates over a traditional Hungarian meal with paprika and palinka or exploring the city's hidden gems with newfound friends, the journey of a foreign student is filled with countless memories that will last a lifetime. To all the foreign students on this incredible journey, I say: embrace the adventure, savor the experience, and let Budapest be your guide to a world of endless possibilities. 

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  - Emily Brontë


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