Newsletter of November 2005
Table of contents
- How do you imagine Campus Europae in 2008?
- Fast facts
- Turning the spotlight on...
- Upcoming events
How do you imagine Campus Europae in 2008?
This was the question in the mind of all the rectors that have convened in Luxembourg for the last EUF-CE General Assembly, who have debated and approved a 30 month strategy plan. This plan envisages 1000 students involved in the Campus Europae study programmes by the year 2008/2009.
If the expected goals are met Campus Europae will soon become the second largest pan European exchange programme in the field of higher education, following Erasmus. Notable is also the fact that BA students will account for the majority of the CE movers. This is to be regarded as a token of the commitment of the Campus Europae Universities to make mobility progressively more universal among their student bodies, even at a time where overregulated undergraduate studies pose a threat the premises of the Bologna process.
The approved strategy and its aims take into consideration the results of the first five Campus Europae pilot projects which have been held in year 2004/2005. These pilot projects have been highly successful and have proved the practicability of Campus Europae’s vision and its related language policy. The development and implementation of the special language courses for Campus Europae students has shown that the CE language policy is a realistic way to overcome language barriers and to make it easier to study in countries where one of the so called “minor” languages are spoken. An Expert-Seminar on "Multilingualism" will be held by Campus Europae in the upcoming 17th and 18th of November at the headquarters of the European University Foundation / Campus Europae, the Château de Munsbach, Luxembourg. The experiences with the CE language policy will be discussed in greater detail with experts from several European language institutes and with the EU Commission.
The discussion of the strategy plan was articulated with the analysis of the European Commission’s proposal for an "integrated programme for lifelong learning" for the period 2007 to 2013. Campus Europae has taken a great interest in this proposal and has held several discussions with members of the European Parliament, particularly with members of the Committee for Culture and Education. The Commission's proposal was favorably voted by the Parliament Plenary and retained both recommendations on the need to increase the financial support to mobile students and to foster innovative ways for Universities and companies cooperate closer together.
Campus Europae is due to integrate concrete cooperation mechanisms in the study programmes that are to be offered from 2006/2007 on. Preparations for the next academic year are about to be concluded bu by the respective subject committees.
Tour d'Europe grand finale in Luxembourg
Two groups of 26 students each have taken part in the adventure of a lifetime: for two weeks they traveled across Europe, visiting all the Universities of the Campus Europae network. Their travel came to an end in Luxembourg, where the participants have met the members of the General Assembly and the CE Coordinators, to whom they have reported on their experiences and their views on what concerns the practical implementation of CE. Moreover the Tour participants facilitated the gathering of data about student living costs, which is available for consultation in the framework of the project "Living Cost Information System" (LIVIS).
Subject Committees about to finish preparations for 2006/2007
Currently the seven Subject Committees (Teacher Training, Humanities, Law, Economics and Business Studies, Medicine, Natural Sciences and Engineering) are under way to implement the 2008 Global Strategy Action Plan. Their work obeys a three step-approach that comprises a preparation phase (Nov. 2005), an information dissemination phase (Dec. 2005) and a selection phase (March/Apr. 2006)
- The Engineering Subject Committee met in Liège on 22 September 2005. Almost all universities active in this committee were represented: Novi Sad, Limerick, Aveiro and Liège. The participants dealt primarily with stocktaking and evaluation of the first year of the pilot project, as well as preparation for the exchange in 2006/2007. Prof. Eduardo Boemo, who had been Chair to the committee for the last three years, handed business over to Prof. Vladimir Katic from Novi Sad who will act as new Chair.
- The Medicine Subject Committee convened in Luxembourg on 8 October 2005. Chair Prof. Béné (Nancy) was gladdened to welcome representatives from five of the six participating universities: Novi Sad, Greifswald, Nancy and Liège – being the University of Lodz the sixth member the committee. The committee worked on the compatibility matrices in order to start a pilot project in Medicine already in April between the Universities of Greifswald and Nancy and - for the academic year 2006/2007 – between the other member universities.
- The Law Subject Committee convened in Greifswald in the 12th and 13th of November. The meeting counted with representatives of all six participating universities and preparations for 2006/2007 are nearly completed. More information on this meting is available here.
New CE website online
Campus Europae has its new website online from mid October on. The new digital platform is meant to be a first stop for all CE prospective students. More detailed information about the project and the participating Universities has been made available, as well as tools meant to facilitate planning of the stays abroad for prospective moving students (such as an accommodation database and a statistical indicators about living costs abroad). International students can also interact in the online forum, while all CE working groups now benefit from a intranet working area. Information on the study programmes available for 2006/2007 is due to be made available form December on.
Turning the spotlight on...
The European Humanities University was founded in 1993 and it quickly became the largest and the only private establishment of higher education in Belarus that had state-recognized university status. It's academic goals were clear from the very beginning, as its creators aspired to make the EHU a place where the humanitarian cultural identity of Belarus would be sought out in the setting of the European humanitarian heritage.
That is why at the beginning it was conceived with only three departments: Philosophy, Theology and Art. Later on this initial structure was complemented by a system of disciplines possessing a more public oriented and applied character (for example, Law, Psychology, Economics, Political Science and Business Management), studied according to special programs developed in the Franco-Belarusian department; along with the latest addition, Computer Science. These departments in turn have several internal study programs.
Over time the EHU provided thirteen major and three minor programmes. Specializations were available in the fields of Philosophy, Cultural Studies, Theology, Political Science, Psychology, International Law, World Economy, Economics, History and Theory of Art, International Cultural Tourism, and Computer Science (Web design and Computer Graphics). Since 1997, the University had been offered Ph.D. programs in Philosophy and Law and in 2000, the EHU established postgraduate programs in Psychology, Cultural Studies and Economics. The Master's degree program in Gender Studies, was launched at EHU in 2000. In the academic year 2001-2002, several new Master's degree programs were initiated. These included Master's degree programs in International Relations, Public Administration, Religious Studies, and Philosophy, as well as others. The ever-growing fields of study were articulated with nine research centers: the Centre for European and Transatlantic Studies, Centre for Belarusian Studies, American Studies Centre, Institute for German Studies, Centre for Gender Studies, Centre for Civic Education, Centre for Economic and Social Research, and Centre for Philosophical Anthropology.
Given its consolidation and growing international reputation all the academia was shocked when, from 2002 on, the Lukashenka Government tried to hijack the institutions academic freedom by threatening to close down the University. Upon several unsuccessful calls from the minister of education asking for the resignation of EHU's founding rector, Prof. Anatoly Mikhailov, the EHU education license was revoked in August 2004. The ground for such decision was the "lack of academic premises", as the leased of the facilities had been abruptly terminated by the Government shortly before. But what undoubtedly lead to this repressive attitude was the "Western-style" education provided by the EHU, who was running an international program of academic exchange and visiting lecturers and fostered an open-minded and democratic learning atmosphere.
In spite of the dramatic events that the EHU and its students underwent its educational projected survived, as from August 2004 on the EHU functioned has a virtual network university with seat in Vilnius, providing distant learning programmes for Byelorussian students. In October 2005 the EHU has fully resumed its teaching activities, upon the enrollment of 171 young Byelorussian BA students and 100 MA students. The distance learning BA programmes allows for the participation of another 293 undergraduate students.
The reopening of the EHU in Lithuania has received strong international support: the European Parliament adopted 3 resolutions that refer to this matter, calling for "the Commission and Member States to assist the University in the pursuit of its teaching and research programmes" and for the "Member States to recognize the degrees awarded by the EHU by way of confirmation of a high level of competence and outstanding academic skills". The political support was complemented by the financial support from European and American donors, ranging from the Governments of Lithuania, Sweden, Germany, Luxembourg, Belgium and Netherlands to the MacArthur Foundation and the US Department of State, among others. But if the EHU has retained its status of a "beacon of intellectual integrity in Belarus" that is due, above all, to the physical courage and relentless determination of its founders, academics, staff and students - their inspiring example breaths new live into the spirit and the principles of the Magna Charta Universitatum, even where politics soughs to prevail over the right to learn and broaden one’s horizons.
CE Seminar on Language Learning Policies
The seminar will take place in the Château de Munsbach on the 17th and 18th of November and aims at reviewing the language learning approach of EUF–CE in the light of requirements for multilingualism in Higher Education in Europe. In a first part, the European dimension of language learning in Higher Education will be explored. In a second part, experiences from other institutions and universities regarding intensive language courses will be shared. Finally, in a third part, first results from language courses within the ongoing CE pilot projects will be discussed. CE is happy to have gained as guest speakers outstanding experts in their fields, among others e.g. Mr. Luca Tomasi of the European Commission and Prof. Konrad Schroeder of Augsburg University as well as staff from the language departments of CE member universities. The seminar is aimed at all those dealing with student exchange and the problem of language teaching in Higher Education.
Business Subject Committee meeting
The next Business Subject Committee meeting will take place on the 11th of October, in the Vytautas Magnus University.
Tour d'Europe follow up meeting
The participants on the Tour d'Europe 2005 will meet in Luxembourg on the 26th and 27th of November to review and present their final reports.
Student Council Plenary Meeting
The Campus Europae Student Council will meet in the University of Örebro on the 10th and 11th of December to elects its new presidency and prepare the activities and projects for 2006.