Washington, DC – On May 27, 2022, the “Hungarian American Coalition Award” was presented to three students at the graduation ceremony of the Bolyai Farkas High School in Marosvásárhely (Tirgu Mures, Romania). Totaling $2,000, the awards were presented to seniors Anita Kis, Bernát Kristóf Vescán-Bakcsy and 11th grader Ábel Újfalusi, who were recognized for their outstanding academic achievement and community service. Students must apply for the award, and applications are evaluated by a faculty committee according to a rules-based point system.
Coalition Treasurer Zsolt Szekeres presents the Coalition Award to Anita Kis and Bernát Kristóf Vescán-Bakcsy. Ábel Újfalusi will receive his award at the school year closing ceremony later this month.
The first prize for academic achievement, in the amount of $1,000, was awarded to Anita Kis whose main interests vary from mathematics, physics, and chemistry to Hungarian language, as well as health care, represented her school in numerous scientific competitions with outstanding results. She plans to continue her studies in civil engineering at the Technical University of Cluj-Napoca.
She said: “Mathematics has always had an important place in my heart, which is why I went to several math competitions for the past 10 years. In addition to studying, I am also interested in photography and I especially enjoy learning foreign languages. In my free time, I read a lot as reading books has always been my refuge when I face challenges. I would like to continue my studies at the Technical University of Cluj-Napoca, majoring in civil engineering. This has been my dream since I was in 7th grade and I’m really looking forward to experiencing college life. I would like to travel a lot in the future, get to know new cultures, and as a result participate in various exchange programs to get a new perspective on the world, getting to know the education system and everyday life of people in other countries.”
The second prize for $500 went to 11th grader Ábel Újfalusi who is interested in mathematics, computer science, physics and astronomy, and has competed in various academic tournaments in the Carpathian Basin related to these fields, with great success.
Senior Bernát Kristóf Vescán-Bakcsy was awarded $500 in recognition of his outstanding community service. He was an enthusiastic organizer of community life and events at the school and was a key figure in the operation of the school radio. He is particularly interested in mathematics and computer science and wishes to continue his studies in automation engineering.
He said: “I have been interested in electronics, computers, physics and computer science since I was a child. During my years in high school, I started delving deeper into these fields, printing in 3D and building things. I love music so in my free time I like creating mixes, remixes and tracks as a DJ and one my goals is to perform at a festival one day. In addition, I was a school technician since I was in 7th grade and I aimed to be as active in school life as possible to create a better experience for the student community in the last 4 years. My other goal is graduating in automation engineering from the Technical University in Cluj-Napoca.”
Due to other engagements, Coalition President Andrea Lauer Rice was unable to attend the ceremony to present the awards. In her stead, Coalition Treasurer Zsolt Szekeres attended and delivered Andrea’s message:
“Congratulations to our wonderful Coalition Award recipients and to your families! Even under normal circumstances, it takes strength and grace to make it through high school and prepare to take that next step. But you – the graduating class of 2022 – have survived that and a global pandemic and a war raging right next door! On the one hand, that is far too much for any high school graduate to have endured, but on the other, it provides an incredible foundation for you to tackle any challenge that may lie ahead. By succeeding through adversity, we become stronger and even more grateful for opportunities. It is an amazing recipe for success … We wish you the very best of luck on your future endeavors!”
The entire ceremony can be viewed here. Our award section starts at 1:30:25 and ends at 1:36:20. Ábel Újfalusi (an 11th grader) will receive his award at the school year closing ceremony later this month.
The “Hungarian American Coalition Award” at the Bolyai High School was established in 2019, and made possible by a grant from the Cultural Foundation for Transylvania (CFT). In the summer of 2017, the Coalition signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with CFT, whereby the Coalition agreed to implement cultural projects in Transylvania in accordance with both organizations’ Board decisions. The Coalition began disbursing grants for cultural and educational purposes that year, and in 2019 established the Bolyai award, building upon this historic high school’s outstanding educational legacy.