Each year, new Swiss higherer institutions can apply to join the Swiss-European Mobility Programme (SEMP). In 2022, the Schaffhausen University of Teacher Education, UniDistance Switzerland and the Space Exchange Switzerland (SXS) consortium have been accepted to join the 45 institutions (and one consortium) that are already part of the SEMP. As of 1 June 2022, these new institutions will in turn be able to organise outgoing and incoming mobility for both their students and staff.
The mobilities implemented under the SEMP help to internationalise higher education institutions with the overall benefits of improving the quality of teaching and learning and increasing international awareness. In the case of the SXS consortium, for example, the internships offered within the European Space Agency (ESA) are a real boon for students who choose this sector. Moreover, several European universities offer specialised master's programmes in the field of space, something that Swiss universities do not yet offer. Such opportunities to study abroad can be supported through the SEMP.
At the beginning of May, the higher education team organised its annual seminar for new staff members in charge of the SEMP at higher education institutions. This half-day event is also open to those who wish to review the basics of the programme and find out more about the new features of the current call for projects. With participation increasing over the past two years, no less than 50 people took part in this year's webinar. "The SEMP is based on the same principles as the Erasmus+ programme and therefore has a lot of rules and administrative aspects to learn. The seminar is intensive, but always takes place in a relaxed and constructive atmosphere", say the seminar organisers and Movetia employees, Stéfanie Brändly and Héloïse Perrin.
As of 1 June 2022, the new 2022 mobility project cycle (also known as a 'call') will begin for all Swiss higher education institutions participating in the SEMP. A launch that also marks the return to near-normalcy after a trying pandemic for students, academic staff and mobility offices who have had to be patient and flexible over the past two years. An amount of CHF 27.6 million was allocated to the institutions for the organisation of mobility for the 2022 call. A sum that promises many rich experiences abroad!