SPbPU enhances academic mobility of students and teaching staff

22 December 2015 International activities 303

Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University is heavily involved in the development and support of academic mobility programs for students and teaching staff. It is one of the priority directions in the university's international activity. The Polytechnic University engaged in the European Commission project "Promotion of European Higher Education" in order to give students more opportunities to take part in exchange programs and joint degree programs, take up scholarship, participate in winter and summer schools. SPbPU's international offices got straight to work by attending the similarly-named orientation seminar for experts in the field of European higher education in Russia, which was held on December 14-15 at the Moscow branch of the European Commission representation office in Russia.

SPbPU enhances academic mobility of students and teaching staff

The project is expected to run for two years (2015-2017) and is aimed at enhancing the attraction of the European education space in Russia and increasing the international academic mobility rate, thus providing a higher overall quality of education. The "Promotion of European Higher Education" project was developed by the European Commission, Academic Cooperation Association (ACA), and ERASMUS+ National Agency in Russia. Ten Russian universities were offered to take part in the project, along with a number of European institutions that facilitate international academic mobility (Nuffic, DAAD, Campus France, British Council, etc.).

"Our research has shown that students all over the world are interested in short-term education programs and exchange programs. However, there are certain obstacles to short-term studies abroad: financial stringency, language barrier, fear of being far from family and friends," Irina FERENZ, Deputy Director of ACA, explained. "Our project is aimed at overcoming these obstacles. We want to inform students about existing programs and institutions that provide financial support for studies in Europe and to teach them how to deal with administrative matters such as receiving a visa, residence permit, etc."

On behalf of project developers, the two-day seminar was attended by the Director of ACA Bernd Wächter, his deputy Irina Ferenz, Anna Viktorova from the ERASMUS+ National Agency, and delegates from Nuffic, British Council, Campus France, French and Swedish embassies in Russia.

During the orientation seminar, delegates from ten Russian universities found out more about the project's goals, got access to all required information resources, and approached the delegates from European organizations that facilitate international academic mobility.

Peter the Great St. Petersburg Polytechnic University was represented by V. A. Denisova, Manager of the SPbPU International Educational Programs Office: "The Polytechnic University aims to continuously develop academic mobility programs for students and teaching staff, thus improving the quality of education and enhancing competitiveness. Thanks to this project ("Promotion of European higher education" - Author's Note), a lot of our students now have the unique opportunity to get international experience in the academic field."

Based on the results of the seminar, the parties agreed that in 2016-2017, the Polytechnic University will host a number of information events for students involving delegates from the organizations that provide grants for studies in Europe, students that have already been abroad, and representatives of European embassies.

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