Unveiling Pathways to Inclusiveness: The CONNECTING EUROPE! Approach

Here is an elaboration on the text with some practical examples:

The CONNECTING EUROPE! project represents an ambitious effort to improve vocational education and training (VET) across Europe. With funding from the European Commission’s ERASMUS+ program, the 31-month project brings together partners from 6 EU countries – Spain, Italy, Cyprus, Greece, Poland, and Belgium.

A key focus is enhancing access and inclusion in VET student mobility programs. For example, the project is developing virtual units to prepare students with disabilities or from disadvantaged backgrounds for studying abroad. These interactive lessons provide practical tips on cultural adjustment, language skills, and managing logistics.

To make mobility more inclusive, CONNECTING EUROPE! is also building tools for recognizing competencies gained through informal learning. When Lucia, a Italian VET student, completes her healthcare admin internship in Belgium, she gains valuable workplace skills. The project’s e-portfolio helps Lucia’s school formally validate these new abilities when she returns to Italy.

Partners are working closely with industry to improve mobility experiences. The tourism board in Cyprus provided input on training needs to help prepare hospitality students like Dimitri for placements in Poland. With better preparation, students can maximize learning during mobilities.

Through webinars and collaborative platforms, CONNECTING EUROPE! allows VET providers to share best practices. For instance, a Dutch school improved their pre-departure orientation based on methods used by a partner in Greece. Such knowledge transfer strengthens mobility programs across Europe.

By emphasizing inclusiveness, transparency, and collaboration, CONNECTING EUROPE! pioneers new approaches to make VET mobility beneficial for all stakeholders. It exemplifies the potential of European partnerships to innovate vocational education.