EEA scholarships popular in Poland
1000 Polish students, teachers and staff will study and work in Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway with support from the Polish scholarship fund. Among the numerous cooperation projects between educational institutions in the 4 countries is a new programme for peace studies in Poland to be rolled out in October 2009.
"The introduction of the Scholarship and Training Fund (STF) turned the gaze to the donor countries and encouraged Polish universities and educational institutions to look towards the EEA EFTA states," said STF coordinator Katarzyna Aleksandrowicz.
Student exchanges tripled
During the 2009/2010 school year, more than 630 student and staff will participate in exchanges between Poland and Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway under the fund. As a comparison, Erasmus statistics from previous academic years show less than 200 student exchanges yearly between Poland and the donor states. The number of supported exchanges under the STF is expected to exceed 1000 by the end of the programme in 2011.
Bilateral cooperation has also flourished through 65 partnership projects between educational institutions in Poland and the EEA EFTA states. Aleksandrowicz noted that this type of activity constitutes a very important aspect of the fund`s activities: "Polish schools and universities are now benefiting from the know-how and experience found in educational institutions in Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway."
Peace and development studies in Krakow
One of the cooperation projects is culminating this fall with a roll out of an entirely new specialization in Polish higher education. In October 2009, the Tischner European University in Krakow is welcoming its first students to its Peace and Development Studies, which focuses on conflict resolution, peace building, humanitarian aid and global development.
The specialisation, taught in English, will be part of the MA curriculum in International Relations. The Krakow university has collaborated with the Polish Humanitarian Organisation, the Comparative Research Programme on Poverty at the University of Bergen, Norway, the International Academy of Liechtenstein and the University of Iceland to develop the programme.
The €12 million Polish fund is the largest of the EEA and Norway Grants' scholarship funds.
Scholarship and Training Fund
Human resource development
Type & project assistance:
Foundation for the Development of the Education System
EEA and Norway Grants
Grant agreement date:
07 April 2008
The purpose of the Scholarship and Training Fund is (1) to increase the scope of student and staff exchanges between Poland and EEA EFTA countries, (2) to increase the scope of cooperation between Polish and EEA EFTA countries educational establishments, (3) to enhance quality of Polish educational establishments and their capacities for international cooperation; with the overall objective to contribute to the development of social and economic cohesion by facilitating mobility and cooperation in the field of education, especially in higher education. Reference is made to the application dated 3 October 2007 and any subsequent correspondence with the Focal Point.
The completed Fund shall include the following activities and results:
- re-granting for sub-projects under the following measures: Mobility projects; Language courses; Individual mobility grants; Inter-institutional cooperation; Development of Polish higher education institutions;
- management of the Fund (including publicity).
The Fund Intermediary is the Foundation for the Development of the Education System (FRSE).
The Fund shall be implemented in partnership with the Norwegian Centre for International Co-operation in Higher Education (SIU) in Norway; the Office of International Education in Iceland and the Agentur für Internationale Bildungsgelegenheiten in Liechtenstein.
The Focal Point shall ensure that at least 10 percent of the total eligible Fund costs is provided by the Polish State Budget.