AEGEE was founded with the aim to unify young people in Europe in order to foster democracy, human rights, European dimension in education and to strive for creating an open and tolerant society. One of AEGEE’s major goals has always been the promotion of European Integration. With this goal in mind, in 1988 the Summer University Project (SU) was born.
The SU, as its name suggests, is a course that takes place every year during summer and lasts between one and four weeks. Each summer, more than 120 of AEGEE’s local branches participate in this project, with SUs taking place in most European cities in which AEGEE is present.
The project is coordinated entirely by the young members of the European Student’s Forum who strive for the idea of a united Europe on a voluntary basis and includes activities that range from purely academic, such as intensive language courses, to cross-cultural. Therefore, participants are offered the chance to –for instance- become familiar with the Finnish culture, Spanish history, Greek mythology or learn how to sail, attend a photography course in Turkey and go hiking in the Polish woods. Moreover, each SU follows a concrete theme throughout its duration. Some of the SU theme’s so far have included: European integration, international politics, active citizenship, education, culture, peace, youth unemployment, personal development and many more.
Exploring and understanding the multicultural dimension of the European continent, removing national borders, fighting for tolerance and becoming open-minded citizens are some of the reasons why 20 to 50 young Europeans from all over Europe come together in each SU.
The SU reflects AEGEE’s traditional formula: Acquaint Europeans with Europe and this year, it will be its 24th anniversary, which makes it the longest lasting project in AEGEE’s history. In the past 2 decades, about 50.000 people were involved and events took place in over 260 cities in more than 40 European countries: SU is now the biggest volunteer-based mobility project in Europe.
Throughout the Summer Universities, the participants discover the lifestyle of young people living in other parts of Europe. Therefore, the participants and the organizers are given the opportunity to experience together the sense of the European identity and citizenship. This is achieved as they share for usually 15 days the same facilities, their thoughts about shaping Europe, their thoughts about the culture of the country of each volunteer. During these 15 days, they are given the chance to create a small multicultural society where people with different personalities and nationalities come together with the same goal: to learn how to live together and despite their cultural , historical and maybe political differences to think as one human being. Furthermore, from the beginning of the project, the exchanges between east-west and between north-south were encouraged.
By choosing to take part in the SU and spend their summer holidays in another part of Europe, the participants are given the opportunity to experience the real culture of other nations and abolish existing stereotypes.
Therefore, if you want to experience yourself the Summer University and what we call AEGEE spirit, just do not wait anymore! Enter the website of the SU, http://www.aegee.org/su, follow the directions and apply! Then, just wait to start the best summer of your life!
Important: Application are on till 24th of April!
More information: http://www.aegee.org/su