Going abroad to learn - Commission launches a public consultation on mobility opportunities for young people
How to boost the opportunities for young people in Europe to develop their skills and knowledge by going abroad? The European Commission today published a Green Paper on "Promoting the learning mobility of young people" with the aim of opening up a debate on this question.Spending a period in another country for studying, learning, work experience or volunteering is one of the fundamental ways in which young people can strengthen their future employability as well as their personal development. With this Green Paper the Commission is launching a public consultation (open until 15 December 2009) on a range of questions: How can we convince more young people to go abroad for learning? What obstacles there are at present? How can we get a wide range of players - the Commission, Member States, regions, education and training institutions, NGOs – to join forces in a new partnership for learning mobility?
Commenting on the Green Paper, the European Commissioner for Education, Training, Culture and Youth, Ján Figel', explained that "learning mobility is good for individuals, for schools, universities and training institutions and for society at large. It helps build skills, language knowledge and intercultural competences, and enhances individuals' and organisations' ability to innovate and compete at the international level."
The EU has a long track record of supporting young people through various programmes and initiatives. But going abroad still remains the exception rather than the rule and it is more accessible to some groups, such as students, than to others, such as vocational trainees and apprentices.
In 2006, around 310,000 young people were able to go abroad with support from European programmes. This represents a mere 0.3% of the age group of 16-29 year olds in the EU, which shows that much more could be done in this area.
To know more
- European Commission Press Release: "Going abroad to learn - Commission launches a public consultation on mobility opportunities for young people" (IP/09/ on Rapid, 8 July 2009)
- European Commission Memo: "Frequently asked questions: Green Paper on Promoting the learning mobility of young people"
- Participate in the consultation
- Commission Green Paper "Promoting the learning mobility of young people"
- European Commission: Support for mobility