Student without borders


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Student without borders

  1. 1. EDUCATION AND TRAINING > ARMENIAStudents withoutbordersSome of them goabroad to live independently www.enpi-info.euor to improve their knowledge, others toestablish contacts and to gain new friends. Most of N Erasmus Mundusthem end up having the greatest experience of their life. students in GreeceThousands of students every year join the EU-funded Erasmus Mundusprogramme, one of the most efficient tools Europe has created to bring upa new generation of youth, free from stereotypes and prejudice. If ErasmusMundus supports students, Tempus promotes transfer of expertise betweenuniversities. Both programmes are powerful instruments to strengtheneducation and to promote European values and ideals throughout the world.Text and pictures by Aghavni Harutyunyan YEREVAN – “I learned to live independently, to communicate freely and openly, I gained new friends and new knowledge: it was the greatest experience of my life”. Shushanik Khachatryan was doing her bachelor studies at the Armenian State Uni- versity of Economics, when she was presented with the opportunity to continue her studies in Thessaloniki, Greece. She accepted it. And the 10 months she spent in Europe thanks to the EU-supported Erasmus Mundus project, have changed her lifeThis publication does forever.not represent the “During the first five months, I studied management at a Greek university, then Iofficial view of the EC continued my exchange year taking practical courses in one hotel. It was great.or the EU institutions.The EC accepts no I’ll be forever thankful to this project, because it gave me the oppor- ENPI Info Centre – Feature no. 39responsibility or liability tunity to study and live in a multicultural environment, to deepen my This is a series of features onwhatsoever with regard professional knowledge and to create new and useful contacts. It was projects funded by the EU’s Regionalto its content. Programme, prepared by journalists a huge life experience,” she says. and photographers on the ground Erasmus Mundus supports students from third countries in their ef- or the ENPI Info Centre. forts to study at a European university for one or two years. On a dif- © 2010 ENPI Info Centre / EU
  2. 2. Students without borders p. 2ENPI Info Centre – Feature no. 39 ferent level, another EU-funded programme – Tempus – provides opportunities for higher education institutions. “Since 1995,” says Lana Karlova, National Tempus office coordinator in Armenia, “this programme has helped us to develop curricula and teaching materials, to upgrade facilities, and to improve university administration.” Both Tempus and Erasmus Mundus are EU-funded programmes for the exchange of students and academic expertise between Europe and its neighbouring countries. “This According to Ara Avetisyan, Deputy Minister of Education and Science of Armenia, programme Tempus and Erasmus Mundus are the most efficient international programmes in has helped Armenia supporting education. “When many years ago we were making the first at- us to develop tempts to find partners,” he says, “the first steps were taken through Tempus.” curricula and teaching Bridging the cultural, linguistic, social divide materials, Erasmus Mundus is based on financing scholarships to exchange students between to upgrade“I learned to live universities in Europe and neighbouring countries. Erasmus Mundus refers to both facilities, andindependently, undergraduate and postgraduate students, and it aims at bridging the cultural, lin- to improveto communicate guistic, and social divide. The scholarship covers all expenses, from plane tickets to universityfreely and tuition fees. Thanks to the programme, many Armenian students have been able administration”openly, I gained through the years to explore European universities. At the same time, Armenia hasnew friends received students from European universities.and new These exchanges have a deep impact on young people’s life, developing their over-knowledge: it all personality and their professional knowledge. After coming back to Armenia, forwas the greatest example, Shushanik and her Erasmus Mundus friends have tried to increase the vis-experience of my ibility of this programme and they have established AEGEE-Yerevan, a branch of thelife”. international non-governmental organisation “AEGEE-European Students’ Forum”. “Now AEGEE is one of the biggest organisations in Europe with more than 15,000 members in 240 academic cities,” says Shushanik, who is now the president of the Armenian branch. Transferring expertise between universities On the other hand, Tempus is specialised in promoting higher education. It is based on transferring expertise between European educational institutions and their counterparts in partner countries. Tempus finances mostly two types of actions: N Sargis Stepanyan joint projects and structural measures. The joint projects are based on multilater- al partnerships. Such projects develop, modernise and disseminate new curricula, teaching methods or materials, they modernise the management and governance of higher education institutions. The structural measures contribute to the develop- ment and reform of higher education institutions in partner countries, enhancing their quality and relevance. Since 1995, Tempus has supported 42 projects in Armenia, 14 in the field of univer- sity management and 28 on curriculum development. “These projects cover many different domains,” continues Lana Karlova, the national coordinator, “we go from N Lana Karlova environmental studies to engineering and technology, from medical sciences to National Tempus office coordinator in Armenia. tourism, law and humanities.” Yerevan State University (YSU) Rector Aram Simonyan has no doubts: “Thanks to Tempus, a stronger cooperation has been developed between Armenian higher education institutions. Before the programme, each of them preferred to act alone.” Geographic information technology is the future “In 2010,” continues Lana Karlova, “four projects involving Armenian higher educa- tion institutions have been selected for funding.” One of them - Geographic informa- tion technology for sustainable development in Eastern Neighbouring countries - is the continuation of a successful cooperation started under a previous Tempus edi- tion. This project deals with GIS (Gographic Information Systems) that capture, store,
  3. 3. Students without borders p. 3ENPI Info Centre – Feature no. 39 analyze and present data that are linked to locations. Such systems digitally create “Thanks to and manipulate spatial areas for decision making purposes, be it in urban planning Tempus, a or agriculture, natural resources management or archeology etc. In this project stronger Swedish, Spanish and German universities will cooperate with two institutes from cooperation Ukraine, two from Moldova and three from Armenia. The total has been volume of the grant is €925,941 for a three-year programme. developed According to Sargis Stepanyan, head of the department of between economics, law and management of Yerevan State University Armenian of Architecture and Constructions, in Armenia there is still no higher programme connected with GIS, though the growing impor- education tance of this sphere is nowadays of no doubt. “Thanks to the institutions. project,” he says, “bachelor’s and master’s programmes will be Before the developed and laboratories established.” programme, each of them preferred to act alone.”Participating countriesArmenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Russia, Ukraine (East), Algeria, Egypt,Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Occupied Palestinian territory, Syria, Tunisia (South)Tempus IV – Modernizing Erasmus Mundus IIhigher education Promotes cooperation between higher education institutions through encouraging partnerships, mobility and exchanges of students, researchers and academic staffTimeframe 2007-2013 Timeframe 2009-2013Budget approx € 35-39 million per year (ENPI) Budget approx € 29 millionObjective ObjectiveThe Trans-European Mobility Scheme for University Studies (Tempus) The Erasmus Mundus II - Action 2 Partnerships seeks to promotesupports the effort of the Partner Countries to modernize their higher better understanding and mutual enrichment between the EU andeducation systems and creates opportunities for cooperation among third countries and in the medium term strengthens political, cultural,higher education actors through joint projects. It also enhances educational and economic links.understanding between cultures as it promotes a people-to-people Find out moreapproach and promotes convergence with EU developments in higher Fiche and news leading to more jobs and growth. Website out more programme_guide_en.phpFiche and news The ENPI Info Centre is an EU-funded Regional Information and Communication project highlighting the partnership between the EU and Neighbouring countries. The project isENPI info centre managed by Action Global Communications.