The Central European University is quite an oasis in the Eastern European spectrum of educational institutions. That is not because, I've come to think, of its curricula, its double American and Hungarian accreditation, its outstanding rankings – incomparable to any other university in the neighboring countries, let alone Hungary, or the world-renowned names of the professorial body. No, it's because it is truly a space of empowerment. It is a space where young students are encouraged not just to learn, but to think, to explore, to invent, to question.
Our teachers were indeed our peers. This was a truly surprising and intimidating realization. To understand that you are deemed a complete adult, a fellow intellectual and academic and a source of fresh, forward-thinking ideas was a maturing experience, the formative nature of which cannot be rivalled by the mere content of what we have learned in our many intense hours in the seminar halls, library and cafes surrounding our beloved building on Nador street.