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Graduation Ceremony at the Institute of Mental Health, Faculty of Health and Public Services

For the first time ever, the graduating students of three different programmes offered at the Institute of Mental Health, Faculty of Health and Public Services – Social Work MSc, Family Studies MSc and Lactation Consulting Specialist Training Course – received their degrees on the same day at Nagyvárad tér Theoretical Building. The 61 graduating students were conferred upon the degree by Dr. Péter Hermann, Vice-Rector for Educational Affairs.

Dr. Péter Hermann is pleased that besides the graduate programmes, specialist training courses are also offered at Semmelweis University, because with this opportunity, health care professionals can receive continuing education and can gain MSc, PhD degrees. He added that in providing such an opportunity, the Institute of Mental Health and the Faculty of Health and Public Services are forerunners. Vice-Rector Hermann also emphasized in his ceremonial speech that during this graduation ceremony graduating students not only receive diplomas in the field of medicine and health care (Lactation Consulting), but also in the field of social sciences and humanities (Social Work MSc, Family Studies MSc).

In her absence, the ceremonial speech of Dr. Beáta Pethesné Dávid, Director of the Institute of Mental Health was read out to the audience by Dr. Attila Pilinszki, Deputy Director. Dr. Pilinszki highlighted that based on the common decision of the organizers, the graduating students are not wearing a regalia during the graduation ceremony, which represents the team’s diversity and personality.

“Please allow me to quote Oscar Wilde, who said that works of art are different but the essence of the artistic effect is unity. This thought perfectly represents today’s graduation ceremony, since this is the first year when the graduating students of three different programmes are conferred upon the degrees on the same day. 36 graduating students received their diplomas in Social Work MSc, 12 graduating students in Family Studies MSc and 13 graduating students in Lactation Consulting. Personal training programmes many times require unique solutions, to which the personality of the teacher and the students also contribute.”, read Dr. Pilinszki the words of Dr. Beáta Pethesné Dávid.

During the ceremony, awards were handed over as well: one person at each programme received an award based on the nominations of students and teachers. In the Social Work MSc programme, the In Memoriam of Csáky-Pallavicini Roger Award was handed over to Mária Katalin Horcsicsákné Fülöp. In the Family Studies MSc programme, the Ilona Székely Award was handed over to Dr. Andrea Rosta. In the Lactation Consulting Specialised Training Programme, the Award named after Dr. Joan Scott was awarded the first time this year, of which the awardee is Nóra Haászné Lovász for her dedicated professional work in the area of breastfeeding support.

The graduating students took their solemn oath led by Dr. Andrea Rosta, Department Head of Social Studies at Pázmány Péter Catholic University, afterwards Dr. Péter Hermann conferred the degrees upon the students.

The graduation ceremony of the Spiritual Counselling Specialist Training Course was held separately, during which 49 graduating students were conferred upon the degree by Dr. Ferenc Bánhidy, Vice-Rector for General Affairs and by Dr. Beáta Pethesné Dávid, Director of the Institute of Mental Health.

In her ceremonial speech Dr. Beáta Pethesné Dávid talked about the study of Joseph Moingt, a Jesuit monk, according to which the transferring of knowledge is like a chain: the teacher receives his/her knowledge from a predecessor teacher in order to pass the knowledge on to a student, who one day would also become a teacher. The transferred knowledge is a major part of the relationship, which is combined with a sense of mission and a sense of duty, and it lasts until the chain itself is alive. Joseph Moingt thought that the knowledge transfer was a live network of relations, in which knowledge was going back and forth, thus communication had an important role in it. As Dr. Beáta Pethesné Dávid said, the feedback provided by the students reinforced this, the Spiritual Counselling Specialist Training Course is also characteristic of this special student-teacher chain. She called the graduating students’ attention to take this knowledge with themselves and make sure to pass it on to others.

The Specialist Training Course in Spiritual Counselling is an ecumenical educational programme, which has been run by Semmelweis University in cooperation with the University of Evangelical-Lutheran Theology and the St Athanasius College of Greek Catholic Theology for fifteen years.

Eszter Keresztes, Orsolya Homonnay-Bukovenszki
Photo: Attila Kovács – Semmelweis University
Translation: Katalin Illés-Romhányi

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