For the first time OeAD organised a webinar for scholars and alumni to introduce Erasmus+ - the EU's programme for education, training, youth and sport. The OeAD has been designated as the national agency for implementing and administering Erasmus+ in Austria. Therefore, EU funding possibilities for Higher Education Institutions (HEI) in Africa, Asia and Latin America to scholars and alumni were presented. Elke Stinnig (OeAD) moderated the event that took place online on 29 April 2021. Around 130 scholars and alumni participated from all around the world.
Gerhard Volz, Head of Department for International Cooperation in Higher Education welcomed the participants and introduced the Erasmus+ programme. This exchange programme for higher education students was established in 1987 and continues evolving and adapting. Apart from student mobility Erasmus+ now offers a wide range of opportunities in higher education also in cooperation with non-European countries. Mr. Volz underlined that he was pleased to see so many former OeAD scholars who are interested in these opportunities and in further cooperation with European institutions.
After the welcome, Philipp Kollien who is working as Programme Officer within the Erasmus+ at the OeAD described Erasmus+ International Mobility (KA107 until 2020, KA171 as of 2022). This scheme offers the opportunity for higher education institutions to send and receive students and staff abroad to/from so-called partner countries outside of Europe to study, teach, or train at participating institutions, as well as to do a traineeship.
Martina Friedrich who has long-time experience with Erasmus+ and its predecessor programmes at OeAD gave a presentation on the centralised actions Erasmus Mundus, Capacity Building in Higher Education and Jean Monnet Activities:
The action Erasmus Mundus Joint Masters (EMJM) supports prestigious integrated study programmes, jointly delivered by an international consortium of higher education institutions and talented students from all over the world with full-time scholarships for participating in these EMJM.
The aim of the Erasmus Mundus Design Measures (EMDM) is to support the development of new, innovative, high-level integrated transnational study programmes at Master level. Any higher education institution established in a programme or partner country can submit an application, mobilises a group of other Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) aimed at setting up a consortium.
The Jean Monnet Activities are designed to promote excellence in teaching and research in the field of European Union studies worldwide.
Erasmus+ Capacity Building in Higher Education supports the modernisation, accessibility, and internationalisation of higher education in developing countries.
In his concluding remarks, Gerhard Volz underlined the role of former scholars acting as ambassadors for Austria not only in the field of higher education but also in promoting the Austrian academic landscape and the culture of the country. He invited everybody to stay connected with OeAD, to continue cooperating with Austrian and European institutions, and to make use of the various opportunities.
In the end Elke Stinnig presented different alumni tools that can be used for further communication and networking among scholars and alumni, which are described at www.oead.at/alumni.
Before concluding the event, the participants were requested to give their opinion on future online events for scholars and alumni via a mentimeter survey. The feedback showed high interest in scholarships and funding possibilities.
The Austrian Database for Scholarships and Research Grants provides students, graduates and researchers information on scholarships and grants.
Study in Austria gives an overview of the Austrian higher education system, lists universities including profiles and contact details and can be used to look for possible partners.
The English-language study guide explains the higher education system in Austria, offers useful tips to foreign students and lists all degree programmes offered by Austrian higher education institutions.
Euraxess Austria provides information on and assistance for all questions essential to the mobility of researchers and their families. It is part of the EU initiative ‘Euraxess – Researchers in Motion’ ec.europa.eu/euraxess. Furthermore, it offers job vacancies for researchers throughout Europe.