Pan-European University network is growing
The European University of the Seas (SEA-EU) welcomes three new partners: The Parthenope University of Naples (Italy), the University of Algarve (Portugal) and Nord University (Bodø, Norway). Growing from six to nine partners, the alliance is sowing the seeds to seize the challenging second phase.
SEA-EU sets sail for an enhanced pan-European academic growth and cultural exchange. The alliance adds three new European partners to its network: Italy, Portugal, and Norway. Hereby SEA-EU increases its diversity of coastal universities, strengthens its representation across Europe and sets a strategic landmark to foster outstanding education and research. “This step ties in our ambitious goals to bid for further funding from the European Commission for the next 4 years”, Francisco Piniella, current head of SEA-EU and rector of the University of Cádiz. On the 9th February 2022 he officially welcomed the new members at the Executive Committee meeting: the Parthenope University of Naples (Italy), the University of Algarve (Portugal) and Nord University (Bodø, Norway).
“We are pleased about our three new partners”, says Francisco Piniella. “They bring enthusiasm, experience and excellence to our team and expand our network into Scandinavia, South and South-West Europe – a notable improvement of SEA-EU´s geographical balance”. Growing from initially six coastal universities to nine allows SEA-EU to enlarge the current community of 150,000 students by another 27,000. They will be able to benefit from the transformation that SEA-EU brings to Higher Education.
The unique aspect of SEA-EU´s approach: The Sea unites all partners
The members of SEA-EU share a vocation for sustainability, inclusion and innovation. The journey of this alliance – one of the first ones launched by the European Commission – began in 2019 thanks to the ERASMUS+ European Universities Initiative.
The members are committed to exemplify a flagship role in the creation of a European Education Area. They aim at offering and secure outstanding education and research on an international level and strengthen European identity and values. “Our students and staff across the partnering universities have access to a series of free courses covering a wide variety of subjects”, says Jonathan Durgadoo, Coordinator of SEA-EU activities at Kiel University. “We are fostering virtual mobility in teaching; scientists and lecturers are offered a platform to deliver a mini-course, based on their research-topics.” Furthermore, the SEA-EU team started designing joint degree programmes for bachelor and master students.
Until now, six universities constituted the alliance: the University of Cádiz, coordinator of the alliance, the University of Western Brittany, Kiel University, the University of Gdanśk, the University of Split and the University of Malta. During its first phase of 3 years, the European Commission aimed to boost this initiative by expanding horizons, objectives and number of partners. Towards the end of March 2022, a proposal for the second phase of SEA-EU together with the three new partners will be submitted to the European Commission.
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The vision of the European University of the Seas (SEA-EU) is to establish a distinctly international, pluri-ethnic, multilingual and interdisciplinary European University. SEA-EU aims to strengthen links between education, research and innovation, knowledge transfer, as well as to foster social engagement and environmental responsibility. The joint strategy is to pursue the building of a true university alliance dedicated to the creation of a European campus where all students and staff can experience Europe through a rich and varied offer of activities and cooperation.