Erasmus Student Network (ESN) is a student organisation founded in 1990 for supporting and developing student exchange.
We are present in 263 Higher Education Institutions from 35 countries. The network is constantly developing and expanding.
ESN is working in Higher Education (HE).
ESN trys to create a more mobile and flexible education environment by supporting and developing the student exchange from different levels, and providing an intercultural experience also to those students who cannot access a period abroad, through internationalisation at home.
In synthesis, ESN:
The students who are returning from exchange are being supported in reintegration process in their home countries by keeping contact with an international environment.
Many local sections are set up by former exchange students, often because they have had good experiences from their exchange period or because they felt a lack of help during their exchange. They also understand better the issues and challenges in a foreign environment.
However, the main focus of ESN is placed on current exchange students, who often face problems (and feel abandoned) in their new environments. Therefore ESN offers help in academic, social and practical integration process. This is mainly done through activities in the local sections, which include cultural and social events such as trips to various places within the country, film nights, buddy group and language projects and international food fests and last, but not least, parties. In addition to that, many sections have introduced mentor systems, which help the international students mainly in academic and practical integration.
ESN also provides relevant information and encourages the future exchange students to gain the international experience and gain relevant insight to different cultures.
Finally, ESN International is developing, from the Headquarters in Brussels, ambitious projects such as the Survey on the exchange students' rights, the ESN Card or the ESN Factory.
The mission of ESN is to foster student mobility in Higher Education under the principle of Students Helping Students.
Erasmus Student Network cooperates with the European Institutions and other relevant bodies and policy makers in the ambitious project of creating and fostering the development of a society based upon mutual knowledge, respect, trust and therefore peace among individuals, groups, communities, peoples and countries.
In this framework and with this purpose, ESN strives for a world were increasingly more young people will be in the condition to access, either by moving or by staying at home, the opportunities of personal growth offered by an international experience in Higher Education.
However, such experience has to be one of quality: this means, that prospective and current exchange students have to be provided with all the necessary information and means for
Hence, we foresee a world where all the Higher Education Institutions support the principle of students helping students, who therefore find their way to mobility and to internationalisation, and all existing and possible threats and obstacles to mobility are annihilated.
The Values that all ESN members believe in and work for are:
All these aspects are included in Vision, Mission and the new Corporate Design of ESN, developed by Koeweiden Postma in January - March 2006.