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Eurogates

European network to encourage mobility

3 August 2007, 00:00

Together with eight other European universities, Radboud University Nijmegen (RU) has established a network to encourage the international mobility of students and teaching staff.

Together with eight other European universities, Radboud University Nijmegen (RU) has established a network to encourage the international mobility of students and teaching staff.

The International Research Universities Network (IRUN) is an initiative of Kees Blom, who stepped down as Rector Magnificus of the RU in May. IRUN’s member universities are located in Glasgow, Poitiers, Barcelona, Siena, Budapest, Krakow, Münster and Duisburg.

"For many students, their future lies in the international labour market," explains Willem Hooglugt of RU. "The key motivation to set up IRUN was to ensure that students can discover and position themselves in the international marketplace." With this aim in mind, the partners in IRUN will be working towards mutual recognition of degree programmes, joint PhD supervision and teacher exchanges. The idea is not to compel every student of RU to go on a foreign work placement, as Blom suggested in his leaving speech.

"That is something that Blom and the university would like to see, but it’s not something you can make compulsory," explains Hooglugt.

The university is considering raising the number of optional study credits from ten to twenty. And it’s not just a wish of Blom, but also of the student representative body, which has been a long-standing advocate of changes to make it easier for students to spend time abroad.

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