08.08.2012 09:24

The Eurasian Chapter has held yet another pre-departure orientation meeting for the newly selected Erasmus Mundus students in Tbilis

This time hot Tbilisi, Georgia became the bridge where Georgian, Armenian and Azeri students met to network and hear hints and tips from their fellow alumni. There were 13 Action 1 students, who joined the meeting.

The meeting was hosted by Ilia State University on 13-14 July, 2012. The first day was opened by Nino Dvalidze, Head of the Office of Development and Foreign Relations, Ilia State University. The participants had the honour to meet Nodar Surguladze, Deputy Minister of Science and Education of Georgia, who underlined the importance of Erasmus Mundus programme and wished the newly selected students a fruitful stay in Europe.

The discussion of visa questions was lively as always as the participants could receive direct advice from Oliver Reisner, press and information officer at Delegation of the EU to Georgia,  Massimo Mossoni, consul at Italian Embassy to Georgia and Lika Kalandarishvili, consular officer at Embassy of UK in Georgia.

The presentation on practical issues was delivered by Anna Korepanova, network coordinator of Eurasian Chapter, with the valuable contributions from Ketevan Darakhvelidze, Deputy Head of the Office of Development and Foreign Relations, Ilia State University – also an Erasmus Mundus alumna.

Natalia Spartakova, head of the EU projects at ICUnet.AG, gave an already traditional training to boost the students’ intercultural competences. And Maria Ustinova, president of Eurasian Chapter, shared her experience and gave advice on practical issues of studying in Germany and Italy.

This meeting was a breakthrough as the university organized live streaming of all the sessions, so the  students from Baku and Yerevan, who could not make it physically to Tbilisi, could still follow it online. This pre-departure orientation also marked another successful cooperation between Action 1 and Action 2 programmes, as it was organized in cooperation with ALRAKIS Erasmus Mundus Action 2 consortium and gave to the students from both schemes a unique opportunity to appreciate country specific advice and stories from alumni.

Special thanks to Ilia State University staff - Maka Lortkipanidze, Study abroad programs coordinator and Salome Bilanishvili, Erasmus Mundus coordinator - who ensured the meeting went smooth and everyone was happy with coffee-breaks :-). It was a positive coincidence that Salome is an Erasmus Mundus student as well, who is going to start MARIHE programme - Master in Research and Innovation in Higher Education – in Austria, Finland, Germany and China. Also special thanks to Shushan Khachaturyan, EMA country representative to Armenia, who assisted with the organization of the online-streaming session in Yerevan.