Any age, either sex, many topics for learning … Hungarians and expatriates living here have a chance to be accepted for an all-expenses-paid scholarship program in India where they can sharpen their professional and other skills.
András Hintya, of Budapest, who is now 56, is a manager at Budapest Chamber of Industry and Commerce, and he was selected to take part in a four-week course for senior managers in January this year. He found himself in Hyderabad at the Administrative Staff College of India with 34 other people from 24 different countries.
It was his first acquaintance with the eye-popping experience that is India and it came as a big culture shock. Alongside that, out of the 34 only four or five were European, the rest coming mainly from Asia and Africa, and they were all younger than him.
“The multicultural atmosphere, the totally different cuisine, etcetera, meant I learned a lot about people and culture,” he said last week. “Four weeks was enough to get me a little familiar with the Indian environment and of course we improved our management capabilities.
“We still keep in touch and plan visits to each other. As for India, I would like to go back.”
Hintya was at the Indian Embassy last week for an evening to promote the Indian Technical and Economic Co-operation (ITEC) program. Ambassador Rahul Chhabra said it is a flagship program of his government with more than 8000 slots a year open at more than 50 premier institutions all over India offering 280-plus short-, medium- and long-term courses in many sectors. People worldwide can apply to hone their skills.
ITEC began in 1964 and has been open to Hungary since 1992. Ten slots are available to Hungarians at present, for which applications should be uploaded at https://itecgoi.in/meaportal/homepage, after which the original application form must be sent to the Asia and Pacific Department at the Hungarian Ministry for Foreign Affairs, Bem rakpart 47, Budapest 1027, for further processing.
Beata Jakusovszky, 40, another Budapester, is an India lover who forgets how many times she has been – six or seven. She was very happy to return under ITEC in 2014 for three months in Delhi learning English language, communications and information technology.
Like Hintya, Jakusovszky found herself in a very multicultural group including people from Africa, South America, Papua New Guinea and Fiji. She said that apart from the educational side of the program, it was beneficial to learn about these other people’s lives.
“I can understand that India is a full-on experience and it is shocking at first but it is best just to accept it, and when we had so many people from different cultures we could help each other,” she said.
Jakusovszky was also appreciative of the fact that they were all very well looked after for the duration, in a five-star hotel with pool.
Courses last from weeks to months and, while there is no minimum educational qualification, applicants must at least have basic knowledge of their desired field. All expenditure, including air fare, board and lodging, internal transport, etcetera is covered by India’s Ministry of External Affairs.