This is one of the greatest benefits of the European Union – the ability to use everything that other European countries offer. Also from education. This means that Polish students can study at the best universities on the continent on the same terms as young people from other countries.
After joining the European Union, member states not only opened their borders to Poles, but also their universities. The EU principle of equality requires equal consideration for its citizens and other residents of the Community. Thanks to this, students from individual Member States pay as much as their peers for studies in other EU countries. – As members of the European Union, we pay the same as the Dutch, and people from outside Europe have to pay much more – says Maksym Ziemlewski, a student at the Technical University of Delphi. Going abroad to study is becoming more and more popular among Poles.
However, to study in an international atmosphere, or even abroad, you do not have to study at a foreign university. Since we joined the European Union, Polish universities have had to carry out a major reform. This is about introducing the ECTS system. – This is a system that allows you to track in some way the requirements and workload of a student during a given semester. In one semester, a student usually has to earn 30 of these points. In two semesters, 60 – explains Anna Stefaniak, a student at the University of Warsaw. This solution makes it possible, for example, to go on an academic Erasmus program. Then we simply collect these points, only at another university, by studying subjects offered by the host university.
There is one condition – during such an exchange you must score at least 20 points. Otherwise, we have to pay back the entire scholarship we received. Thanks to such facilities, thousands of young Europeans go on Erasmus every year. – In 2022/2023, this academic year, approximately 980 students left. In 2023/2024, we already know that 1,000 people applied – says Professor Sambor Grucza, vice-rector of the University of Warsaw for cooperation and employee affairs.
A sea of possibilities
The mentioned Erasmus – although the most famous and existing for many years – is not the only EU program enabling academic exchange. In 2018, the European Commission established European Universities – one of President Macron’s demands made during his speech at the Sorbonne. – The European Universities Initiative involves the merger of various universities. At the University of Warsaw, we are a member of an alliance called 4EU+ – adds Professor Sambor Grucza. This initiative allows students from across Europe to form alliances in which they deepen cooperation, blurring the boundaries between their own campuses.
For example, the mentioned 4EU+ alliance brings together the Universities of Warsaw, Geneva, Copenhagen, Milan, the Sorbonne, Pantheon-Assas University, Charles University and the University of Heidelberg.
– Both didactic and scientific projects are selected, but so-called guest professorships are also paid from this fund – explains Professor Grucza.
The University of Warsaw is not the only Polish university associated with European Universities. Already 23 universities from all over Poland are creating their own alliances, developing their ability to conduct scientific research, but also guaranteeing their students participation in classes organized by partner universities. – The goal is for this cooperation, which is today called the European University, to actually develop into a formal and legal structure within which a student who is a student of the University of Warsaw will either be able to be, or will automatically be, also a student of the European University – explains Professor Grucza .
The European Commission’s goal is to reach 60 European Universities by mid-2024. Therefore, further competitions for financing new university alliances are already planned.
Facts about the World TVN24 BiS
Main photo source: Facts about the World TVN24 BiS