After news of a successful application, planning for the Erasmus+ 2019 Learner project is now underway. ColegauCymru’s European and International Coordinator, Siân Holleran, has begun the journey across Wales for Erasmus+ start-up meetings with colleges. These meetings will discuss the next steps for the project and explain the process of organising a successful Erasmus+ mobility exchange.
ColegauCymru secured over £1.3 million, allowing 624 students from 11 colleges across Wales to take part in a two-week work placement abroad. There are 12 European countries involved in this project, offering work placements in salons, nurseries and professional football training, among others. This project will also see its first partnership with Cyprus.
The Erasmus+ projects are beneficial to young people, as they not only gain experience working abroad, but also a new sense of independence. Some learners that have taken part will be experiencing their first time abroad.
Past learners have talked about the positive impact that Erasmus+ has had on them. A Hair and Beauty learner from NPTC said, “This experience was honestly the best 2 weeks of my life. I have learnt so much and I now realise I can work abroad in the future. It has opened so many doors for me and I already have salons asking me to work for them back home due to this experience. This has made me realise that I also have the potential to open my own business and be successful.”
Erasmus+ is important in shaping young peoples’ lives by giving them an opportunity that they otherwise would not have. It increases their confidence and gives them an insight into working abroad. On 16 October, a group of learners met with Jeremy Miles, the Welsh Government Brexit Minister, to discuss the positive impact that Erasmus+ has had on them. ColegauCymru hopes this will raise awareness of the benefits of Erasmus+ and demonstrate the importance of keeping international work placements for college learners after we leave the European Union.