News | Press Releases 2023

Coalition to Honor Dr. E. Sylvester Vizi and the Béla Bartók Hungarian School of Boston

Washington, DC – On October 19, 2023, the Hungarian American Coalition (Coalition) will host its 18th annual Gala Dinner at the House of Sweden in Washington, D.C. At this year’s Gala dinner, the Coalition’s Board will honor Dr. E. Sylvester Vizi, President of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences between 2002 and 2008, and current President of the Friends of Hungary Foundation; and the Béla Bartók Hungarian School of Boston (Boskola).

This award is bestowed annually to those individuals and/or institutions, who have made significant contributions to strengthening transatlantic relations, assisted the Coalition’s educational and cultural programs, and helped our organization support our brethren in the Carpathian basin.

Dr. E. Sylvester Vizi at the Friends of Hungary Foundation’s 8th annual conference’s Gala held on September 16, 2022 at Vigadó Concert Hall in Budapest, Hungary

Dr. E. Sylvester Vizi has been a long-time supporter of the Coalition and many Hungarian American organizations and initiatives. He is a medical doctor, neuroscientist, pharmacologist, university lecturer, professor emeritus, and a full member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA). He was awarded the Széchenyi Grand Prize by the State of Hungary. He is an internationally recognized researcher in pharmacology and neuroscience and has been a lecturer at Semmelweis University in Budapest, Hungary and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine at Yeshiva University in New York, USA. From 1996 to 2002, Professor Vizi was the vice-president of the MTA and president from 2002 to 2008. He is currently Chairman of Friends of Hungary Foundation’s Board of Trustees. Chairman of the Society for the Dissemination of Scientific Knowledge (TIT), Chairman of the Board of the Hungarian Corvin Chain, as well as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Blue Planet Climate Protection Foundation (Kék Bolygó Klímavédelmi Alapítvány) and Honorary President of the Hungarian Atlantic Council since 2020. He has authored and/or co-authored over 450 scientific articles and several books. Professor Vizi is well known for his significant scientific educational activities.

The Béla Bartók Hungarian School of Boston (Boskola) was established in 2000 by enthusiastic parents from the Boston area. Its mission is to enrich Hungarian language skills and cultural appreciation of children between the ages of 3 and 18. Parents and Scout leaders volunteer as Boskola teachers and staff.

Since its founding, the number of Boskola classes and students have grown consistently. In recent years, between 50 and 60 families with 80-90 students have regularly attended the sessions, studying in different groups according to their age and language level. As interest grew, they began offering nursery and adult language classes. Students learn Hungarian songs and games, how to read and write in Hungarian, and become familiar with Hungarian traditions and important events in Hungarian history.

To maintain the school, a minimum tuition fee is charged to parents who do not volunteer as teachers. The contributions cover the cost of renting classroom space and purchasing materials. Read more at: /

Students and teachers of Boskola

The proceeds of the Gala will support the Coalition’s three educational programs, which have benefitted more than 500 students over the past 25 years:

•   John N. Lauer Leadership Training Program (LTP):

The LTP provides an opportunity for young Hungarians to gain first-hand experience working in Washington DC-based institutions. The customized program motivates interns for public service and helps them create a professional network in the US. The LTP has provided invaluable internship experiences in Washington DC for more than 100 talented young Hungarians from Hungary, the Carpathian Basin and the US.

•   Dr. Elemér and Éva Kiss Scholarship Program (EEKS):

Established in 1997, this scholarship program provides partial scholarships to outstanding Hungarian students who pursue full-time studies in the US. The EEKS has been awarded to 165 students to attend US university programs over the past 25 years.

•   Bognár Family Hungarian Scholarship Program (BFHS):

Established in 1999, this program provides financial assistance to qualified Hungarian university students studying in Hungary or the surrounding region. The BFHS has helped 271 students – some of them multiple times – from across the Carpathian Basin attend local colleges.

For more information on tickets, please contact Noemi Banhidi, Program Coordinator at

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