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An Overview of OSAO’s Erasmus+ Mobility Activities in 2015 – 2016

This post covers the main activities and results of our recent Erasmus+ KA1 projects. First, however, I would like to thank our partners all over the Europe for the co-operation. We are grateful for the support and work you have done for our students and staff members. We also value the development work we have done together in various projects. By having long-term and high quality partnerships, we can feel confident about working together now and in the future. Second, I would like to thank the Finnish National Agency, CIMO, for the funding and support we have received for our Erasmus+ KA1 projects.

Recent Erasmus KA1 Projects

In 2015-2016 we had three on-going projects:

  1. Let’s Go! started in 2014 and finished in July 2016. The project funded 97 student mobilities and 35 staff mobilities. During the project we developed our mobility processes and guidelines to ensure high quality mobility periods. Another main goal was to create partnerships that look into new ways to implement internationalisation. We also started preparing our teachers to host foreign students in their classrooms in order to attract our partners’ students even better in the future.
  2. Bon Voyage and Bon Appétit was a project coordinated by OSAO in partnership with Lappia and Lamo. It started in 2014 and finished in July 2016. The project funded 36 student mobilities and 14 staff mobilities in the fields of Tourism, Catering and Domestic Services and Food Production. In the project the three colleges developed and created documents and compared their processes regarding assessing the vocational skill demonstrations. Please feel free to contact me, if your organisation wishes to utilize these documents.
  3. Let’s Go Further! started in 2015 and it will finish in summer 2017. There are 99 student mobilities and 36 staff mobilities in the project, of which 74 student mobilities and 11 staff mobilities were carried out last academic year. The project continues working on the same themes as Let’s Go! project.

Overall, our students and staff members have been very satisfied with their mobility experiences. Students have reported about not just professional but also personal development. They have returned with increased self-esteem and curiosity to experience the world. Some of them have even returned to their training placements after graduation. Staff members have created valuable networks and learned new working methods. If you wish, you can find some of the students’ reports here (only in Finnish). They have also been active on social media and posted there with #erasmusplus #osao.

Statistics 2015

  • 34 students spent more than 2 weeks abroad (652 weeks in total, average 4.86 weeks).
  • In total, 268 student mobility periods were carried out.
  • 88 staff mobility periods that lasted for 5 days the minimum (99 weeks in total).
  • In total, 117 staff mobility periods were carried out.
  • 168 students from our partner schools visited us (381 weeks in total).
  • 174 staff members from our partner schools visited us (80 weeks in total).

We are happy with the slightly increasing numbers – it shows us that our work has been recognised and we can offer meaningful learning experiences to our students and staff members. At the same time we have been able to develop our work. However, we would like to see even more students visiting us in the future – and with that we need our partners to help us.

Plans for the Academic Year 2016 – 2017 – We Hope to See You in Oulu!

The new academic year is around the corner. App. 80 students are currently planning their mobility periods that will be carried out in autumn. The first ones will already be starting their journeys in a couple of weeks’ time. 16 staff members will spend a week or two at our partner organisations in autumn. Plans for the spring will be started later this year. In total we have grants for 135 student mobilities and 30 staff mobilities for the coming academic year. The plan is to concentrate on developing our guidance methods and processes during the student mobilities. New technologies will be utilised, too.

We would also love to see our partner colleges’ students and staff members visiting us in Oulu. We will continue supporting our staff members’ language skills as well as planning new ways to do co-operation with our partners. Some practical tips for a visitor can be found on our website. If you want to be involved, please contact us and we can be creative together!

We are also planning something for the European Vocational Skills Week, 5-9 December 2016. Stay tuned!

Text: Katariina Walker, International Affairs Coordinator
Photos: Jouni Ylisuutari