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EU Commissioner announces New "Erasmus for All"

With European Union Education budgets for the Eastern Partnership significantly increased this year, university cooperation and individual student and professor mobility will be boosted. A regional conference on EU Programmes Tempus and Erasmus Mundus highlighted these new opportunities and brought together 300 representatives from higher education institutions and key partners in Kyiv 5-6 December. "Erasmus for All", which opens the EU programme to even more students, will bring together all beneficiaries into one global community of scholars and university staff as of 2014. Ms. Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism, Sport, and Youth, opened the conference and held a public speech in the National University of Kyiv - Mohyla Academy.

"The privileged relations between the EU and its Neighbours have led to closer political association, deeper economic integration, increased mobility and more contacts between people. Cooperation between universities and their staff and the mobility of their students is an important aspect of this privileged relation and of higher education's increasingly international nature" said Commissioner Vassiliou.

Strengthened engagement in the area of education is a crucial element of the EU Neighbourhood Policy. Particular attention is given to support for young people, students, and university staff, who play an important role in the current democratisation and modernisation processes.

The conference was organised under Platform IV of the Eastern Partnership, which is a policy forum that brings together experts and officials from education, research, youth and culture. The discussion focused on modernization of the higher education systems and joint academic cooperation and mobility projects. The conference coincided with the new calls for proposals for Tempus and Erasmus Mundus projects.


Tempus and Erasmus Mundus contribute to developing individual and institutional capacities. Tempus promotes institutional cooperation, with a focus on higher education reform and capacity-building and some exchanges. Erasmus Mundus funds mobility for individual students and staff, as well as the development of high quality joint degrees.

Since Tempus' inception in 1990, a total budget amounting to € 136 million has been allocated to the Eastern Partnership countries (Belarus, Ukraine, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Georgia), to finance more than 300 cooperation projects and hundreds of individual mobility grants. In the past four years, more than 290 institutions in the six Eastern Partnership countries have been involved in the fourth generation of Tempus projects with a budget of € 42.7 million, of which € 12 million for equipment. Nearly €30 million have been allocated for the next Tempus Call for Proposals for the Eastern Partnership countries, an increase of 160% compared to the previous call.

Erasmus Mundus is a world-wide programme, which dedicates substantial parts of its budget to partnerships in the Eastern Partnership. Since 2004, the Erasmus Mundus programme has funded study opportunities in Europe for over 3 800 students and academic staff from the Eastern Partnership region. For the 2011-12 academic year, 860 students from the Eastern Partnership region received scholarships (an increase of 326 from those initially planned). For the two forthcoming academic years, the EU will continue to strengthen its support to student and academic exchanges with its Eastern neighbours, aiming at increasing the number of student scholarships. These new opportunities will be open to undergraduate, postgraduate, doctoral and post-doctoral students and teaching staff exchanges.


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