Eötvös Loránd University
 Institute of Geography and Earth sciences
Department of Meteorology
Address: H-1117 Budapest, Pázmány P. sétány 1/A      E-mail: metnimbus.elte.hu
Postal address: H-1518 Budapest, P.O. Box 32.        Phone: +36 (1) 372-2945 Fax: +36 (1) 372-2904
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History of the Department of Meteorology
1. The Early Years
The major development of Meteorology (both in education and research) is related to the regular meteorological observations. First, Ferenc Weiss recorded weather phenomena regularly at the University of Nagyszombat from 1753. Then, the University moved to Buda so meteorological observations continued in the University Observatory (called Csillagda) located in the Buda Castle until 1818, and later (1818–1848) at its new site in Gellért Hill. After the initiation of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences the Hungarian Royal Institute of Meteorology and Geomagnetism has been established in 1870. In the meanwhile, institution of a university department has been arisen.

In the 20th century the idea presented itself from time to time. Endre Héjas suggested to establish a department for meteorology at the University of Budapest in 1906. Then, again in 1919. Meteorology already became part of the various courses: Lajos Lóczy taught it in his lectures Physical Geography and Descriptional Geography, Radó Kövesligethy regularly offered courses Meteorology since 1890. Furthermore, Climatology was offered by Géza Czirbusz, and other meteorology-related courses were offered by Jenő Klupathy. Professors and tutors in meteorology worked for the University all the time, and an independent and permanent Department of Meteorology was needed but never established.

Then, in 1926 and later, in 1938, on the annual assembly of the Hungarian Meteorological Society several proposals for establishing a university department have been presented but they have been inefficient for two decades. Finally, in 1945 the Department of Meteorology has been founded.
2. Institution of the Department of Meteorology
When the department was established at the Pázmány Péter (later Eötvös Loránd) University in Budapest in 1945, it was called Department of Atmospheric and Climatology Sciences. The first head of the department was József Száva-Kováts. The department belonged to the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, and it was located in the main University building at the Múzeum avenue.

The University structure has been changed in 1949: 22 departments and institutes, the Botanical Garden, the Institute of Physical Chemistry and the Institute of Human Science formed the Faculty of Science. In 1953 the department had the present name: Department of Meteorology.

The head of the department was József Száva-Kováts in the period of 1949-1953. Then, he and Tamás Révész were removed from their position and relocated because of fictitious political accusation. So Frigyes Dési became the head of the department from 1953 until 1970, he was followed by Zoltán Dobosi in 1970, Ferenc Rákóczi in 1983, and when professor Rákóczi retired Judit Bartholy became the head in 1996.

The department located at the Ludovika square in the period 1986-1998, then it moved to Lágymányos, to the new University Campus.
3. Education of Meteorologists at the Eötvös University
Although the Department of Meteorology was established in 1945 education of meteorologists has not begun for 5 years. The first students specialized in meteorology were admitted in 1950, their studying period lasted 4.5 years. The first diplomas in meteorology were issued in September 1954. So 113 meteorologists graduated in the following 4 years (1954-1957). Both theoretical and practical courses were taught at high level in this period. Due to low number of departmental staff several lectures and seminars needed teachers (who are experts in their research area) from the Hungarian Meteorological Institute.

During this first period, due to the increased 5-year plan of the political era too many meteorologists graduated in very short time period. In order to stabilize the situation, namely, train as many meteorologists as needed at the Hungarian Meteorological Institute but also keeping in mind that all the graduated scientists must be able to find a job, a new strategy must have been worked out. So from 1957 the education of a meteorologist increased up to 5 years, and remained that until now.

According to the new educational strategy students specialized in mathematics, physics, or geography (or high-school teaching of these subjects) could choose meteorology as a secondary specialization. Students who were interessted in meteorology had extra course work related to meteorology for 2 years, and then they had to decide whether or not have a secondary specialization and get an extra diploma in meteorology. If they decided to study meteorology as well, they could even replace some of their orginal courses by meteorology courses. The first sudents with this type of extra diploma in meteorology graduated in 1962. During the previous 4 years (1958-61) no students graduated as a meteorologist. Then, until 1980, 92 young scientist graduated with a secondary diploma in meteorology.

Then, from the academic year 1980/81 students can be specialized solely in meteorology, and get a diploma as a meteorologist. This innovation in the education was necessary due to the recent rapid development and change in science (computer science, satellites in the Space, environmental problems, etc.). So new courses were offered and included in the meteorology curriculum, e.g., Numerical weather prediction, Satellite meteorology, Environmental protection, etc.