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The European Parliament celebrates 30 years of #Erasmus+

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Experiencing life abroad, making new friends and memories that last a lifetime... What does this remind you of? The Erasmus+ programme is not only about studying, it is about learning. Since its launch in 1987, more than nine million people have been able to study, work and volunteer abroad with the help of Erasmus grants in one of the most successful European programmes. Its 30th anniversary this year will be marked with conferences, forums, dialogues, celebrations, debates and exhibitions throughout Europe. You can search for events in your country here.

Parliament celebrated the landmark anniversary yesterday (13 June) with an award ceremony in Strasbourg where Parliament President Antonio Tajani and European Commission President welcomed 33 Erasmus participants from each country taking part in the programme. Celebrations include an exhibition on Erasmus+, as well as debates on the future of the programme.

Tajani said: "[Erasmus] must be available as an opportunity to all young Europeans, regardless of their level of education or their family's income. This is why we must work on a EU budget with adequate resources. More funding for Erasmus also means less youth unemployment."

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The current seven-year programme for 2014-2020 has a budget of €14.7 billion, which is 40% more than the previous budget. This reflects the EU's commitment to invest in Europe's youth.

Petra Kammerevert, the chair of Parliament's culture and education committee, also took part in the celebrations: "[Former Commission President] Jacques Delors said 'You cannot fall in love with the single market' and I think he is right. This is what we are trying to change with this programme, by showing that the aim is to get people closer to each other.”

More information

Watch the ceremony in Parliament live on Tuesday 13 June from noon CET

Erasmus+ programme

30th anniversary of Erasmus+

Legislation establishing Erasmus+

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Education

The future of Erasmus+: More opportunities

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From a bigger budget to more opportunities for disadvantaged people, discover the new Erasmus+ programme.

Parliament adopted the Erasmus+ programme for 2021-2027 on 18 May. Erasmus+ is a flagship EU programme that has proven successful in creating opportunities for young people and increasing their chances of finding a job.

MEPs negotiated an additional €1.7 billion for the programme, helping to almost double the budget from the 2014-2020 period. This should enable about 10 million people to participate in activities abroad over the next seven years, including students, professors, teachers and trainers in all sectors.

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The centres of vocational excellence, which were proposed by MEPs, are now part of the new Erasmus+. These international centres provide quality vocational training so that people can develop useful skills in key sectors.

A priority of the Parliament, the programme is now more accessible and more inclusive. This means more people who are disadvantaged can participate and benefit from language training, administrative support, mobility or e-learning opportunities.

In line with EU priorities, Erasmus+ will focus on the digital and green transitions and promote a healthy lifestyle as well as lifelong learning for adults.

What is Erasmus+?

Erasmus+ is an EU programme supporting opportunities for education, training, young people and sport in Europe. It started as a student exchange programme in 1987, but since 2014 it also offers opportunities for teachers, trainees and volunteers of all ages.

More than nine million people have taken part in the Erasmus+ programme over the last 30 years and nearly 940,000 people benefited from the programme in 2019 alone. The programme currently covers 33 countries (all 27 EU countries as well as Turkey, North Macedonia, Serbia, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein) and is open to partner countries across the world.

According to the European Commission, a third of Erasmus+ trainees are offered a position by the company they trained in. In addition, the unemployment rate of young people who studied or trained abroad is 23% lower than that of their non-mobile peers five years after graduation.

How to apply

Erasmus+ has opportunities for people as well as organizations from all over the world.

The application procedure and the preparation can differ depending on what part of the programme you apply for. Discover more information about it here.

Erasmus+ 2021-2027 

Erasmus 

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Brexit

Scottish government comment on efforts to stay in Erasmus

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Minsters have welcomed the support of around 150 MEPs who have asked the European Commission to explore how Scotland could continue to take part in the popular Erasmus exchange programme. The move comes a week after Further and Higher Education Minister Richard Lochhead held productive talks with Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Commissioner Mariya Gabriel to explore the idea. Until last year, over 2,000 Scottish students, staff and learners took part in the scheme annually, with Scotland attracting proportionally more Erasmus participants from across Europe - and sending more in the other direction - than any other country in the UK.

Lochhead said: “Losing Erasmus is huge blow for the thousands of Scottish students, community groups and adult learners - from all demographic backgrounds - who can no longer live, study or work in Europe.“It also closes the door for people to come to Scotland on Erasmus to experience our country and culture and it is heartening to see that loss of opportunity recognised by the 145 MEPs from across Europe who want Scotland’s place in Erasmus to continue. I am grateful to Terry Reintke and other MEPs for their efforts and thank them for extending the hand of friendship and solidarity to Scotland’s young people. I sincerely hope we can succeed.

“I have already had a virtual meeting with Commissioner Gabriel. We agreed that withdrawing from Erasmus is highly regrettable and we will continue to explore with the EU how to maximize Scotland’s continued engagement with the programme. I have also spoken with my Welsh Government counterpart and agreed to keep in close contact.”

Click here for more information.

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Education

Commission welcomes political agreement on Erasmus+

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The Commission has welcomed the political agreement reached between the European Parliament and EU member states on the new Erasmus+ Programme (2021‑2027). Trilogue negotiations have now concluded, pending the final approval of the legal texts by the European Parliament and the Council. Promoting our European Way of Life Vice President Margaritis Schinas said:  “Erasmus is Europe's most emblematic programme, the jewel in our crown. The Erasmus generations represent the essence of our European way of Life. Unity in diversity, solidarity, mobility, support for Europe as an area of peace, freedom and opportunities. With today's agreement, we are ready for the next and bigger Erasmus generations.”

Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth Commissioner Mariya Gabriel said: “I welcome the political agreement on the new Erasmus+ programme. Erasmus+ is one of our flagship programmes. Over the last three decades, participation in Erasmus+ has boosted the personal, social and professional development of over 10 million people, almost half of them between 2014 and 2020. With almost double the budget for the next programming period, we will now work to reach 10 million more over the next seven years.”

Erasmus+ is one of the most successful initiatives of the EU to date. Since its inception in 1987, the programme has expanded to cover all education and training sectors ranging from early childhood education and care, and school education, to vocational education and training, higher education and adult learning. It has benefitted more than 10 million people. With a dedicated budget of €24.5 billion in current prices and an additional top-up of €1.7bn in 2018 prices, the new programme will not only be more inclusive and innovative but also more digital and greener. You can find the press release here.

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