Tempus, an EU-funded higher education programme, is expected this year to have budget exceeding €40 million allocated to the six Eastern Partnership countries, announced Klaus Haupt, Head of the Tempus Unit of EU’s Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency, at an international conference “Tempus-Ukraine@20”, held on May 14 in Kyiv. Over 200 conference participants discussed the programme’s many achievements over its 20-year history, and considered future possibilities. A special award ceremony recognised the Tempus partners that have seen the most positive results.
University exchange, enabled by the Tempus programme, “is probably the best tool to fight against stereotypes and to bring people together,” believes Ambassador Jan Tombiński, head of the EU Delegation to Ukraine. The EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, which will possibly be signed in 2013, is another example of a mutually-beneficial partnership for both the EU and Ukraine, Tombiński stressed, adding that both sides “will have a chance to profit from this new rapprochement between two parts of Europe.”
Dmytro Tabachnyk, Ukraine’s education and science minister, says his ministry is ready to further support efforts of the Ukrainian university community to participate in the Tempus Programme. He also described how over the last 20 years more than 120 Ukrainian higher education institutions (representing 40% of all tertiary education institutes in Ukraine) have taken part in Tempus projects.
Klaus Haupt adds that Tempus had a long-lasting impact on the development of the higher education system in Ukraine. This year’s budget of the programme is a “very good indicator of the EU’s commitment to this type of co-operation, especially during times of austerity,” he concluded.
For 20 years, the EU-funded Tempus programme has invested over €85 million and helped modernise higher education in Ukraine through co-operation between universities in the EU, Ukraine, and other partner countries. Adopting best European practices, the Ukrainian universities have developed curricula to educate modern professionals, enhanced student services and facilitated student mobility. Driven by market demand, they have used Tempus assistance to actively transform scientific innovations into business-products, create modern in-service training programmes for academic and non-academic staff, and worked on qualifications system – in liason with relevant sectors of society.
For further information: Ukrainian National Tempus Office
Kostiantyn Romashko, Kyiv