12 November 2021
A broad range of study opportunities presented at the first Unite! Virtual Fair for students
Unite!, an alliance of seven European universities, offers opportunities to develop international skills and global networks in many different ways. The first Unite! Virtual Fair for Students was held on 3 November, 2021.

Unite!, an alliance of seven European universities, offers opportunities to develop international skills and global networks in many different ways. At the Unite! Virtual Fair for Students held on 3 November a wide range of study opportunities were presented, such as joint programs, project courses, summer schools and language and cultural courses. There were 270 registered students and 80 staff representatives from all universities in the alliance, including Aalto University (Finland), Grenoble INP-UGA (France), KTH Royal Institute of Technology (Sweden), Politecnico di Torino (Italy), Darmstadt University of Technology (Germany), Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (Spain) and Universidade de Lisboa (Portugal).

 
Axel Cuellar, a third year architecture student at Aalto University, came to the fair to get acquainted with Unite! virtual courses. “I came to the fair because TU Darmstadt has a few interesting architecture courses that are of great interest. I wanted to talk about them with a contact person and get more information, ”says Axel. In addition to architecture, Unite! also offers virtual courses on e.g. energy. The courses are open to all students in the seven universities.

 
The fair was held on an interactive platform, where visitors move from room to room just like at a regular fair. “I think the virtual fair was quite a refreshing, convenient experience. A very insightful way especially now during the pandemic. Why not at other times also? At first I imagined it was more or less some sort of a Zoom event or webinar, but luckily not. I was surprised when I had the opportunity to move around in different rooms and visit the exhibition booths, where there were presenters and groups chatting via video call, ”Axel described the fair experience.

 
The planning and implementation of the student fair was a great example of the cooperation between staff in the Unite! universities. Already during the initial planning meeting, it was evident that the student fair would promote activities catered by the majority of the Unite! task forces. The planning team consisted of Unite! colleagues from four different task forces: Student services and MultiLingual & MultiCultural (Task Force 3), student mobility (Task Force 6), joint programmes (Task Force 5) and Strategic Communications Team (Task Force 10). “It was a joy to see how the design of the different exhibition rooms evolved as the teams got together to create their space in the platform”, describes Karin Knutsson, Group Manager at KTH Royal Institute of Technology and Unite! task force officer.

 
”We are pleased with the number of student registrations at the fair, reaching Bachelor, Master and PhD students. Next year we foresee that we can promote a high number of Unite! activities, including those now in their planning phase.  Reflecting on the collaboration during the past six weeks, I’m amazed at how natural it has become to turn to a colleague at any of the Unite! universities for support, advice, and a good spirit”, Karin concludes.

Text by Suvi Lavinto (Aalto University), originally published in:https://www.aalto.fi/en/news/a-broad-range-of-study-opportunities-presented-at-the-first-unite-virtual-fair-for-students