Erasmus+ is a program created by the European Union (EU) that aims to provide opportunities for people to study, work, or volunteer abroad, as well as to develop skills and competencies that can enhance their personal and professional growth. The program covers a range of activities and supports various types of projects, partnerships, and collaborations within and beyond Europe.
The Erasmus+ program was launched in 2014, replacing several previous EU programs, such as the Lifelong Learning Program, Youth in Action, and Erasmus Mundus. The program’s name comes from Erasmus of Rotterdam, a Dutch philosopher and humanist who lived in the 15th and 16th centuries and is considered one of the pioneers of modern education and cultural exchange.
Erasmus+ is open to a wide range of individuals and organizations, including students, teachers, staff, volunteers, youth workers, trainers, educators, schools, universities, vocational education and training (VET) providers, adult education centers, NGOs, and businesses. The program operates in 33 countries, including all EU member states, as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, North Macedonia, Serbia, Turkey, and the United Kingdom.
What’s Erasmus+ main benefit?
One of the key features of Erasmus+ is its emphasis on mobility and cross-border cooperation. The program provides funding and logistical support for individuals and groups to undertake learning or teaching experiences in other countries. For example, students can spend a semester or year studying at a partner university abroad, while teachers can participate in job shadowing or training courses in other educational institutions. Likewise, youth workers and volunteers can participate in exchanges or projects that promote intercultural dialogue, social inclusion, or environmental awareness.
Other venues of activity
Erasmus+ also supports the development of strategic partnerships and capacity-building projects that aim to improve the quality and relevance of education, training, and youth work. These projects can involve multiple organizations from different sectors and countries and can address various themes, such as digital skills, entrepreneurship, civic education, or sustainable development. They can also foster innovation and creativity by encouraging the use of new technologies, methods, and approaches.
Moreover, Erasmus+ promotes policy cooperation and exchanges of good practices among national authorities and stakeholders in the fields of education, training, and youth. This enables the identification of common challenges, opportunities, and priorities, as well as the sharing of expertise, resources, and experiences. Erasmus+ also supports the dissemination and exploitation of project results and outcomes, with the aim of maximizing their impact and sustainability.
In addition to the above activities, Erasmus+ also provides opportunities for individuals and organizations to receive support for activities such as:
- Volunteering: The program supports short-term or long-term volunteering activities in different areas, such as social care, culture, environment, or sports.
- Traineeships: The program provides funding and support for students or recent graduates to undertake work placements or internships in companies or organizations abroad.
- Joint Master Degrees: The program supports the development and delivery of joint master degrees that involve multiple higher education institutions from different countries.
- Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs): The program supports the development and delivery of online courses that are open to anyone and cover various topics and disciplines.
Is Erasmus+ worth it?
Overall, Erasmus+ is a comprehensive and dynamic program that seeks to promote internationalization, mobility, and cooperation in the fields of education, training, and youth. By providing opportunities for individuals and organizations to learn, share, and collaborate across borders and sectors, Erasmus+ aims to contribute to the development of a more inclusive, innovative, and resilient Europe and world.