EU programme for education, training, youth and sport

Erasmus+ 30 anniversary logo

The 30th Anniversary and You

Whether people have improved their chances of finding a job, developed fresh perspectives on sustainable development, learnt a new language, gained a clearer idea of European citizenship, or found a new passion for volunteering: Erasmus+ has produced many success stories.

The Erasmus Programme has been enriching lives for the past 30 years. It is not just a time in someone's existence, it is a turning point.

Erasmus+: shaping Europe's future

What started as a student mobility programme in 1987, has grown into something bigger and enriched the lives of more than 9 million direct participants, not to mention the indirect impact it has had on so many others. That’s why in 2014 we combined many programmes into one: Erasmus+.

This platform for European and international mobility and cooperation brings people from different backgrounds together. It provides them with the competences needed to lead independent, fulfilling lives and helps them find their place in our societies and develop a sense of a European identity – an identity that complements our national, regional, local identities.

The 30th Anniversary of Erasmus coincides with another milestone of European integration: the 60th Anniversary of the Treaty of Rome, which promotes an ever-closer union within Europe. Both anniversaries celebrate a common goal: uniting European people.

Widely recognised as the most successful EU programme, Erasmus+ provides us with a concrete example of the positive impact of European integration and international outreach, having enriched the lives of nearly 2 million people from Europe and beyond between 2014 and 2016 alone!

So it seems only right that 2017 will be a year of both celebrating all the things Erasmus+ has achieved so far, but also a year to reflect on the future Europe we can build together!

Throughout 2017, there will be a number of events held all over Europe depicting the story of Erasmus+ and its predecessors over the last 30 years. Celebrations, conferences, debates, dialogues, exhibitions, forums and more will be organised at local, national and European levels. Join us at events near you!

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The Erasmus+ generation's vision for Europe

This 30th Anniversary offers the perfect opportunity to reflect on what Europe can be for each one of us.

You – the Erasmus generation – hold the future of Europe in your hands. So why not have your say?

Share your ideas of how we can build a better Europe together. Multiple opportunities throughout the year will give people a platform to present and discuss ideas.

Do you have a personal experience of the Erasmus+ Programme you would like to share? If so, connect with us through Twitter or Facebook.

Want to know how Erasmus+ affected the lives of other European citizens? Take a look at our Erasmus+ Stories and get inspired!

Fancy organising an event related to the 30th Anniversary or a debate on the future of Europe? Check out our toolkit and find the materials you'll need!

The + in Erasmus+

So what does the 'plus' in Erasmus+ mean?

Since its creation, the Erasmus Programme has developed and expanded greatly. The programme is no longer focused solely on academic education. On the contrary: the ‘plus’ means that it now includes workplace traineeships, staff training and teaching activities, and cooperation projects between universities, research organisations, companies, NGOs, local, regional, national authorities and other socio-economic actors – within Europe and beyond.

And there's more!

Today, Erasmus+ offers a large number of opportunities to individuals and organisations – to go abroad as volunteers or apprentices for example, and to cooperate on joint projects. Sport has also become an important part of Erasmus+.

Widening the target group of the Erasmus+ programme generates great potential to foster economic growth, job creation and social cohesion within Europe, while simultaneously providing young Europeans with the opportunity to enhance their personal and professional development.

Erasmus+ will be offering mobility opportunities from and to all EU Member States and beyond, for more than 4 million Europeans between 2014 and 2020.

Erasmus+ is more than just mobility

With cooperation projects, Erasmus+ provides organisations active in the fields of education, training, youth and sport the chance to forge international partnerships which broaden opportunities for staff and students and drive reform.

Now it's your turn:
tell us about the '+' in your Erasmus+!


Erasmus+: the EU's biggest success story

The Erasmus programme (European Region Action Scheme for the Mobility of University Students) was built on pilot student exchanges from 1981 to 1986 and formally adopted on 17 June 1987. In the first year, 1987/1988, the programme involved 11 countries (Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Greece, France, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and United Kingdom), with 3 244 students travelling abroad to study.

In 1987, the programme targeted higher education students. It has since grown to offer opportunities in vocational education and training, school education, adult education, youth and sport.

In 2014, the Erasmus+ Programme was launched, combining in one single programme all initiatives in the field of education, training, youth and sport (e.g. Erasmus, Leonardo da Vinci, Comenius, Grundtvig, Jean Monnet, Erasmus Mundus, Alfa, Edulink, Youth in Action and Sport).

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