The Institut für Europäische Politik (IEP) and the Centre international de formation européenne (CIFE) hold an official farewell for the first generation of graduates of their Online Master Programme “Studies on the EU and Central Asia in the International System” (EUCAIS). The graduation ceremony will take place at the European Commission`s base in Berlin.
IEP and CIFE jointly developed the study programme EUCAIS, which is funded by the VolkswagenStiftung and the European Commission. It offers the opportunity to obtain a master’s certificate in European and Central Asian Studies to young professionals from Central Asian countries, Afghanistan and the Chinese province of Xinjiang.
The programme is based on the principle of blended learning. It combines workshops in Berlin and Brussels with online seminars, in which the students are able to participate from their home countries. “EUCAIS has been able to benefit from CIFE´S many years of sound experience in the field of online master programmes”, says Prof. Dr. Hartmut Marhold, General Director of CIFE. Furthermore, meetings with political and economic experts and decision-makers provide the students with the opportunity to establish personal contacts with Europe. IEP and CIFE use the “electronic silk highway” to give further training to young professionals, and in order to transfer research expertise in the fields of political science, economics and law.
From the very beginning, the programme has enjoyed the interest of a large number of regional academics. “We would never have imagined that our programme could ever become as popular as it is. We had almost twenty times more applicants than we had places to offer”, says Mathias Jopp, Director of the IEP.
By participating in EUCAIS, the students gain a deep insight into western academic culture. Most EUCAIS students are already in employment. Many of them are involved in education and public administration. They are therefore able to apply their newly gained expertise and (the) international academic standards to their professions and impart their knowledge to colleagues and students.
Conveying knowledge works both ways.. “Working with people from completely different cultures is extremely valuable to us as a team. Both students and staff are given the chance to broaden their horizons – even beyond academic work and knowledge”, maintains Jopp. Moreover, the gathering of members from different ethnic backgrounds helps to overcome national differences and to foster peaceful coexistence.
[Press release, EUCAIS, Berlin, 22 March 2012]
EUCAIS website: http://www.eucais.org/