North West Regional College has secured €1.6 million of Erasmus+ funding, offering staff and students opportunities to study and work across Europe to develop knowledge and skills during the next 24 months.
The funding will be used for staff and students from many of the college’s curriculum areas to travel to partner countries including Germany, Norway, Sweden, Finland, France, Italy and even Reunion Island. They will undertake training and development programmes which are designed around specific curriculum, entrepreneurship, leadership, innovation and creativity. Staff will also participate in strategic partnership projects collaborating on innovative practices for vocational, training and education with a number of key European partners.
Bronagh Fikri, European and International Projects Officer at NWRC said: “The college is delighted to have secured this funding from the Erasmus+ programme which has greatly benefited those who’ve participated in our previous projects, both on a professional and personal level.
“NWRC has been successful in increasing Erasmus+ funding, year on year, since 2014 and we are also pleased to announce our success in obtaining the Erasmus+ VET Mobility Charter, currently only held by 14 organisations in the UK. The charter is awarded to organisations with a proven track record in organising and delivering high-quality mobility projects.
“Additionally the college has received Commended status in the AoC Beacon Award British Council International Award.”
The €1.6 million announcement was made at a special event hosted by the college, celebrating the success of the college’s Erasmus+ training mobilities and collaborations across European networks in 2018/2019.
During the event, students who have taken part in a range of different mobilities across the world received awards recognising their various achievements.
Special guest for the event, Jennifer McKeever, MD of Airporter, told the students they had increased their value as a citizen, as an employee and as a potential employer by taking part in the Erasmus program.
She added: “You have demonstrated that you have courage to take on new challenges, and that you have already had to meet and impress new people. You have demonstrated that you can integrate into a new team.
“Please allow me to congratulate you on what you have achieved and thank you for having the ambition to push yourself out into the world and to bring back your experiences to enrich and improve our collective community in the North West. We are all more colourful because of what you did. Please allow me to encourage you, implore you to continue to look outward, and to build on what you have learned.”
Leo Murphy, Principal and Chief of NWRC said: “I would like to congratulate Bronagh Fikri and her team who have worked so hard to bring this Erasmus+ funding to the college.
“We are committed to continue being an outward and forward-looking college that is part of an outward and forward-looking region. It’s vitally important that our young people get access to internationalisation both in Europe and further afield as thesemobilities contribute greatly to building the confidence and skills of our students.”
Beverley Harrison, Director of Further Education at the Department for the Economy congratulated NWRC.
She said: “This is a prestigious achievement and one which underlines the excellent track record that North West Regional College has established in making educational mobility a reality for many of its students, as well as building international links with other organisations across Europe.”
The winners of the NWRC first Erasmus+ awards were:
Competence Development Award – Niamh Keogh, Early Years
ERASMUSPRO Award - Cameron McDonald, Hospitality
Inspiration Award - Ryan O’Connor, Media
Staff Award - Liz January, Lecturer in Hairdressing
Best Erasmus+ Award - Josh Kuzma, Media