What is Erasmus+ Programme?
The Erasmus exchange programme, which was created to allow university students in the EU and partner countries to study abroad, may be available to you if you reside in the European Union (or one of the partnered countries outside the EU). Here, we examine what the Erasmus+ programme has to offer, outline the application process, and hear directly from one Erasmus participant.
The Erasmus+ Programme: What is it?
For residents of the EU and its partner nations, there is a programme called Erasmus.
The Erasmus programme has gone through numerous iterations as it has developed over the years, but its primary objective has always been to give students the chance to experience education abroad.
The Erasmus+ programme is the name of the current iteration. The 2021-2027 programme places a strong focus on social inclusion, the green and digital transitions, and promoting young people’s participation in democratic life. It supports priorities and activities set out in the European Education Area, Digital Education Action Plan and the European Skills Agenda.
The Erasmus+ Programme: When did it start?
The 1987 establishment of the Erasmus exchange programme led to the launch of the Erasmus+ programme in 2014.
The programme was named after the well-known Dutch philosopher and theologian Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam, although Sofia Corradi, affectionately known as “Mamma Erasmus,” had the initial idea in 1969 to promote cultural, social, and educational interchange between students in Europe.
Since its inception, the Erasmus student exchange programme has involved more than 9 million students, and it now accepts roughly 300,000 participants annually.
Which nations are a part of Erasmus+ Programme?
Approximately 30 nations participate in Erasmus+. Spain, Italy, France, Sweden, Germany, and the Netherlands are some of the countries where students are most likely to travel. Hungary, Cyprus, Croatia, Malta, Romania, Norway, and Slovakia are additional participants.
You should be careful when choosing your location because you will have the ability to travel and learn all about the local culture in addition to the opportunity to study and work there.
How can I apply for Erasmus+ Programme?
Typically, collaborations between institutions or schools that have participated in the Erasmus+ programme help to organize it. Each university’s Erasmus coordinator will walk you through the application process for Erasmus+.
The steps are typically:
- Write a personal statement on why you wish to study abroad and how it will benefit your education in the student application form.
- Sign a grant agreement.
- Pass a risk review.
- Sign out a learning contract.
- Applications are usually submitted in January of the year you desire to travel abroad with the support and approval of the faculty’s Erasmus coordinator.
- After receiving all applications from candidates, they will conduct interviews in February. The University sends a proposal to participate in the Erasmus+ Programme to all candidates approved. After that, you can finish the procedure directly to the organization.
How would Erasmus+ scholarships and education costs function?
Participants in the Erasmus programme are exempt from paying tuition at their host institution. You will nevertheless need to pay tuition at your local university. Some students may qualify for reduced tuition assistance when studying abroad, however, it is best to confirm this information with your home university.
The Erasmus+ scholarship will be given to eligible students and applied against other expenditures associated with studying or working abroad.
Often, even during your year abroad, you will continue to receive any student loans or grants you have already been awarded.
For students with special needs who want to participate in the programme but might not be able to do so without further financial assistance, Erasmus+ also provides a student stipend. Your faculty coordinator will be able to give you advice on the additional forms and regulations involved.
Finally, students participating in Erasmus+ can apply for a trip stipend. If you are successful, you could get financial assistance for at least a portion of the school year.
Why should I apply to Erasmus+ or any other Scholarship?
Studying abroad has various advantages, including the following:
- See the world and learn from other cultures by travelling.
- Meet new people and establish connections with those who will always be a part of your life.
- Study abroad to encounter different teaching and learning methodologies
- Independence: Develop life management and priority-setting skills.
- Learn a new language so you can converse with others and advance your knowledge beyond that of a simple tourist, or practice your English with other non-native speakers.
- Improve your employability by adding experiences to your resume that many employers will find fascinating and position yourself as a strong contender.
Experience as a student: Constanza Gonzalez
I’m Constanza Gonzalez, and I want to tell you about my experience using the Erasmus programme to move to Portugal. Planning a study abroad programme involves anticipation and challenges that are inescapably a part of the process. My most recent international experience began in 2017 after 6 years of working in a Higher Education Institution when I found and applied for an Erasmus fellowship for an administrative staff exchange in Spain, Portugal or Poland, and I got a scholarship to visit Portugal with all expenses paid for three months.
This was a life-changing experience as I fell in love with Portugal, its culture, its location, its quality of life and its weather. I went back to Colombia but 4 months later I was packing everything to come to live in Portugal where I live now.
Some universities handle the majority of the logistics for the exchange semester informing students in detail about the possibilities for exchanges both with and without Erasmus. If you choose to participate in the exchange, the university will give you a step-by-step manual outlining the deadlines you need to be aware of when submitting the paperwork and getting in touch with the partner university.
However, that was not my luck as my university did not have information about the Erasmus programme although it was part of it, for this reason, I had to prepare all documentation in January and by August of the same year, I received confirmation of my acceptance and a scheduled flight for November.
The deadline for applying for an Erasmus grant is normally around June/July, a few months before the trip begins. Start early your application because if you miss the deadline, you can miss out on the grant as well. Although the grant won’t cover all of your bills, it normally guarantee the payment of either your rent or daily expenses.
I’d also suggest reading up on the culture of the place you will be arriving and I don´t mean knowing every detail of their history. It is merely a suggestion that you do some study on the kinds of things to look out for and explore once you are there. The most crucial need is that you respect the locals and the way they go about their daily lives.
Obtaining housing is most likely one of the most difficult chores anywhere. Certainly, that was true in Lisbon. Unfortunately, I had to pay triple the local rent during my stay because the only places I could find were unsuitable and frequently involved a long-term lease. However, I stayed close to the campus so I saved a little on transportation.
No matter where you live in Lisbon, it’s simple to spend a significant amount of time outside. There are numerous free spaces where you may stroll, relax, sip coffee, or grab food without breaking the bank.
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