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Orbán Opens Annual Showcase of Trade School Talent

Government

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán speaking at this year's edition of the Szakma Sztár Festival.

Photo by MTI/Szilárd Koszticsák

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán opened Szakma Sztaá, an annual festival celebrating the accomplishments of young Hungarians in vocational programs, in Budapest on Monday, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

Addressing the participants at the event, organized by the Hungarian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MKIK), Orbán noted that six of ten Hungarians enroll in vocational schools after completing their primary school education. The most popular form of school in Hungary is now the technicum, he added.

He acknowledged the contribution of Hungary's dual vocational education training system to economic growth and said higher enrollment numbers at vocational schools and improved evaluations show the new system "is working".

He conceded that there is room to improve the country's education system, but said it shouldn't be underestimated either. 

He told students that curiosity, creativity, perseverance, and cooperation are "key to success".

Orbán said Hungary can only prosper if "everybody works and everybody works well". He added that "seeing the world" is a good thing, but coming home is always worthwhile. 

He told the students they don't have to leave home, as companies from the West and from the East as well as Hungarian businesses, are all present in the Carpathian Basin.

MKIK chairman László Parragh said building the needs of businesses into the vocational education system is a "key of economic success". He acknowledged the elimination of the barriers between vocational education and higher education, but said reforming vocational education is an ongoing process as it changes to meet the demands of the moment. 

Some 200 finalists, selected from a field of 7,800 applicants in 54 trades, will compete at this year's Szakma Sztár.

The National Agriculture Chamber (NAK) has joined the festival for the second year.

The Hungexpo fairgrounds in Budapest is hosting Szakma Sztár on April 24-26.

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