Cardiff Metropolitan University hosted a two-day Consortium Meeting on 24th – 25th June 2014 to discuss achievements to date in relation to the Erasmus Mundus ELEMENT project.
17 out of 20 partner universities within the ELEMENT project were in attendance, as well as Dr. Yasser Elshayeb from the National Erasmus+ Office (NEO-Egypt).
Day one consisted of reporting on and evaluating project achievements up until now, which included coordinator, partner, scholar and regional perspectives. The emphasis was on academic recognition between Europe, Egypt and Lebanon as the majority of the scholar mobility flows have completed.
During day two of the meeting, Graziella Gaglione, from Sapienza University in Rome, presented on the EGRACONS Lifelong Learning Project which focusses on the all-important theme of academic recognition. This theme was explored in depth with European, Egyptian and Lebanese case studies. A strategy was also devised for the final year of the project that will focus on the quality, impact and sustainability of the ELEMENT project (a final year action plan). Future project activities were also discussed and included a presentation on the new Erasmus+ programme launched in January 2014. Dr. Yasser Elshayeb, NEO, commented on the success of the meeting: 'Although the ELEMENT project is nearing its final year, it is important to meet as a consortium to discuss future plans, impact, sustainability of the consortium and to work on the development of long-lasting relationships between all the partners'.
During both days there was an opportunity for current Cardiff Met ELEMENT scholars to interact with the consortium and meet members of their home universities, as well as a networking event for Cardiff Met staff that have been granted ELEMENT scholarships and are due to mobilise to Egypt or Lebanon.
Professor Mohamed Loutfi, Cardiff Metropolitan University's Pro Vice-chancellor (International), noted the importance of such meetings: 'It is significant that the consortium continues to build on their relationships as this supports the aim of the Erasmus Mundus projects, which is to promote international cooperation in Higher Education across regions. It is always a pleasure to host such meetings at Cardiff Met'.