What is Erasmus Plus?
You may have heard of the Erasmus programme, which stands for European Community Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students. Erasmus was originally an exchange programme for students, providing them with a chance to mingle with new mates on the continent and expand their knowledge and learning.
Erasmus Plus Overview
Erasmus Plus isn’t an unfinished sum or mathematical equation, oh no. Rather, Erasmus Plus is an extended programme that covers education, training, youth and sport. Sounds a bit vague doesn’t it? Right, so Erasmus Plus provides an opportunity to over four million Europeans to study, train, gain work experience and volunteer abroad. That’s a bit clearer isn’t it?
Erasmus Plus supports partnerships among education, training and youth institutions and organisations to “foster cooperation and bridge the worlds of education and work”. Erasmus also works in sport, supporting grassroots projects and combatting match-fixing, doping, violence and racism. Sounds awesome. “How can I get involved?”
If you’re in Higher Education, e.g. at university, and you fancy studying or working abroad, then Erasmus Plus could help you out. You can study for three months or a whole year. Unfortunately, you can’t go in the first year of your degree, but students from all subject areas can participate. Sound like your kind of thing? Make some enquiries at your university to see what your options are. You also apply for Erasmus Plus through your university.
Alternatively, you can carry out an Erasmus Plus traineeship (work placement) for any period of time from two to 12 months. First years and graduates are eligible for this too! Students get a grant of €250-300 a month, with those on a traineeship getting €350-400 a month. Not bad!
Studying or working abroad will give your CV, skills and self-confidence a massive boost, making you attractive to future employers.
If you’re aged 18-30 and living in the UK, you can use Erasmus Plus to learn a new skill by taking part in volunteering opportunities lasting from two weeks to 12 months! Your travel, accommodation, food and insurance will be paid for, along with a small monthly allowance. Awesome, right?!
Not to mention that you’ll have the opportunity to try out the type of work you might wanna do in the future – employers will love that you’ve gone out your way to learn new skills, gain relevant work experience and experience a different culture and language.
Erasmus Plus also allows 13-30 year olds the opportunity to take part in youth exchanges lasting between five and 21 days. You can meet other young people and discuss your interests, lives and cultures. This is basically an exchange programme and is a great opportunity to experience another culture.
Erasmus Plus promotes fair play and cooperation, and organisations can form partnerships to form to implement innovative practices, arrange not-for-profit events and gather and share evidence to increase participation and eradicate corruption, discrimination, violence and doping.
And there we have it. All the ways you can get involved in Erasmus (even if you aren’t in Higher Education). It’s a great way to experience different cultures and travel across the continent, increase your skills and employability. What are you waiting for?