Minister of State for Higher Education Mary Mitchell O’Connor has announced today that €500,000 will be made available to higher education institutions seeking to join the European Universities initiative at the second stage of the project. Institutions wishing to join the initiative now have the opportunity to apply for a portion of this funding to assist them in doing so.
The project is run by the EU Commission and its first stage saw Trinity and Dublin City University (DCU) form partnerships with other universities within the European Union.
The European Universities Initiative was introduced as part of the EU’s aim to create a European Education Area. Their main objective is to establish a sense of cooperation and alliance between European universities. If successful, the EU hopes that several institutions will designate as “European Universities” by 2024, creating a network that allows students to study in numerous EU countries while completing their degree.
Today’s announcement of €500,000 in government funding will go towards facilitating Ireland’s participation in the initiative.
Trinity was selected to be part of the project having applied alongside the University of Barcelona, Utrecht University, the University of Montpellier and Eötvös Loránd University to form the CHARM-EU grouping (Challenge-driven, Accessible, Research-based, Mobile).
DCU became a member of the European Consortium of Innovative Universities through the project.
Mitchell O’Connor said that through participation “our institutions will strengthen their offering” and “prepare our young people for their future as European citizens in a global world” as well as “open the door to new possibilities.”
She added that the progress of this initiative “will be a transformative force in higher education” and contribute “greatly towards economic growth.”
Institutions have until Friday November 22 to apply for government funding to assist them in joining the project.