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Meet the first ReConnect Hungary 2019 candidate

We are pleased to ​introduce Kristina Knechtl (23) from Michigan, who was the first candidate accepted to the 2019 ReConnect Hungary Program.

She is excited for the cultural immersion experience of ​a lifetime in June. Let's find out who she is:


Why did you apply for the ReConnect Hungary program?
I applied to ReConnect Hungary because I wanted to see the country where my grandparents originally came from. I’ve always felt a strong connection to Hungary through my Dad. He would take me to Hungarian restaurants and shops throughout Detroit. He also would tell me the story of how my grandparents came to America by crossing the border into Austria. I always dreamed of visiting the place where my Dad’s family came from and the ReConnect Hungary Program is the perfect opportunity to do just that.
Have you ever been to Hungary before?
I have never been to Hungary before, this will be my first time visiting the country. Which is very exhilarating! I can’t wait to experience everything Hungary has to offer.
Which part of the birthright trip sounds the most exciting to you?
The part that excites me most about the birthright trip is connecting with the Hungarian people. Seeing how the Hungarians live on a day to day basis and interacting with the locals. I can’t wait to deepen my understanding of Hungarian culture and share it with others when I come back home.
Are you going to visit your Hungarian relatives during the trip?
Most of my close relatives moved to America after 1956. I know I have some distant cousins in Hungary but figuring out how to find them and contact them proves to be a challenge. I would love to meet some of my relatives but I don’t know if that will be a possibility for me.

Lucy Kosty, RH'21

My whole life I felt like we were missing pieces to our Hungarian heritage. The only things passed down through the generations were the food and some family stories. After this trip, I feel like I got to fill in those gaps. I have a better sense of what it means to be Hungarian-American and I feel a stronger connection to my great grandfather.

This experience

Madison Jones, RH'19

I got a more thorough experience of Hungarian culture than if I would have traveled by myself...

This experience

Mark Czeisler, RH'18

ReConnect Hungary is an exceptional opportunity to discover aspects of your past...

This experience