European Region Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students, a programme that had a number of specific objectives:
- to improve the quality and to increase the volume of student and teaching staff mobility throughout Europe, so as to achieve at least 3 million student and teacher exchanges by 2012
- to improve the quality and increase the amount of multilateral cooperation between higher education institutions in Europe
- to improve and increase cooperation between higher education institutions and enterprises
- to spread innovation and new pedagogic practice and supports between universities in Europe
Apart from the student mobility mentioned in the first objective, which is the most visible and “iconic” element in the programme, support is also given to developing closer links between university faculties.
Really what is ERAMUS all about:
1. Getting drunk every night and experiencing a different culture by ‘getting it on’ with another nationality.
2. Skipping class because:
a. All you have to do is pass the exams
b. Too hangover from the previous night
c. Traveling in another country
3. Trying as many different nightclubs, alcohol and partners as possible. It is all about building up a story that you can tell your male friends in the future over drinks.
4. Retaking exams several times because the first time you were either hangover from the previous night or didn’t study due all the drinking and traveling.
So, why do universities still insist that their students take part in ERAMUS. Maybe, behind of this drinking & traveling, we actually learn something. For me, this is what I have learned over the last 4 months:
1. Life is bigger than your own little circle. We try to draw boundaries so we feel comfortable and able to understand what is going around us. Sadly, the real world has no boundaries and if you can get down with that then your success is always gonna be limited.
2. Women – Yes, my narrow perceptions of women were proven wrong over the last few months. Its sad, how Asian women have lost perspective of love and family and replaced it with career and money. At least now I know that if I do ever get married, it is gonna be a westerner or at least someone with that kinda of personality.
3. I am smarter than I thought. Yes, its my ego at play again but after studying in Budapest with Germans, Americans, Scandinavians etc, I have realized that end of the day when it comes to academics I am just freaking good. Ask any ERAMUS student about Sami and they would tell you about how much he was drunk the before night and went just crazy but showed up for the 9am class the next day and made every other student feel stupid in class.