Studying in Europe for free: Erasmus Mundus opens EU doors to Ukrainian students

Oleksandra Balyasna, Erasmus Mundus alumni (left) at Education Abroad fair in Kyiv
Oleksandra Balyasna, Erasmus Mundus alumni (left) at Education Abroad fair in Kyiv

Education abroad is no longer a luxury – visitors to the Education Abroad fair hosted by Ukrainian House in Kyiv Nov. 15-17 were greeted with that new reality. Amid exhibits from a variety of universities from across the globe, the Study in Europe stand presented EU-funded education opportunities.

Erasmus Mundus is the most successful and well-known EU education programme, with 146 masters and 43 doctorate programmes open to Ukrainians. Over 800 Ukrainian students, teachers and researchers received Erasmus Mundus scholarships between 2007 and 2011. Erasmus Mundus offers Ukrainian students €24,000 per year for masters programmes and from €60,000 to €130,000 for three-year doctorates. Through partnerships with various universities across Europe, students have the opportunity to study in a variety of European cities: from Bologna to Paris and from Manchester to Barcelona.

Erasmus Chavez
Ricardo Chavez, a steering committee member of the Erasmus Mundus Students and Alumni Association

Ricardo Chavez, a steering committee member of the Erasmus Mundus Students and Alumni Association, spoke highly of his own Erasmus Mundus experience.

“Studying in a multicultural environment helped me to get soft skills that are important in my professional life,” he said. “I feel more confident approaching partners in other countries.”

Dariya Gribanova, a member of the Erasmus Mundus Alumni Communications Team, feels that “Erasmus Mundus is a chance for Ukrainians to remove stereotypes about Europe as well as reverse biased opinions about our country.” Within the framework of her programme, she studied free of charge in Greece, France and Italy with an Erasmus Mundus scholarship. In Greece in particular she enjoyed free food and medical care for students and rich cultural opportunities including a three-day visit to Athens.

Dariya Gribanova, a member of the Erasmus Mundus Alumni Communications Team
Dariya Gribanova, a member of the Erasmus Mundus Alumni Communications Team

More and more students will be enjoying experiences like these. On Nov. 28, the European Commission agreed to provide 228 scholarships and support 20 university partnerships worldwide, which will lead to nearly 2,560 student and academic staff exchanges in 2013.

Štefan Füle, EU commissioner for enlargement and European neighbourhood policy expressed his support for education objectives.

“Investing in people is a key objective of the neighbourhood policy. This is the reason why we have significantly increased the funding for our higher education programmes in the neighbourhood during the last years,” he said.

Olena Orzhel, the national Tempus office monitoring manager, draws attention to the future 2014 Erasmus for All programme that willbring together all seven EU education, training, youth and sport programmes. Erasmus for All will simplify the application processes, reduce duplication and fragmentation, and facilitate short-term stays in European universities.

For further information:

Erasmus Mundus website:

http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/erasmus_mundus/index_en.php

Erasmus for All website

http://ec.europa.eu/education/erasmus-for-all/