Photo by Dominic Wunderlich
2 March 2022
Ten Unite! students participate in the European Students' Assembly
The European Students Assembly will take place on 3 and 4 March in Strasbourg, France. Around 275 students from 41 European alliances will meet to discuss about European issues and make recommendations to the European Commission.
On the 3rd and 4th of March, nine students from Unite! universities will participate in the European Student Assembly, which will bring together 275 nominated student representatives from 139 universities (28 countries) from the 41 European University Alliances (EUAs), at the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
 
The conference is the first in a series of meetings that will give students a public voice in the European Union. The European Students' Assembly is one of the main activities of the European University Community. This inaugural session will be a unique opportunity for students from across Europe to address some of the complex challenges facing the EU today, with the aim of collecting recommendations for the European Commission in the framework of the Future of Europe Conference. 

Students have been divided in different panels and round tables according to the main topics of the discussion: 
  • How can the EU rally its citizens around its common values; 
  • How can the European Union become more resilient to cyber-attacks;
  • After the pandemic, do we need a European Health Union; 
  • Agriculture versus sustainability; 
  • What economic model can the EU adopt; 
  • What should the European democracy of the future look like; 
  • How can the EU regulate digital platforms;
  • How should the EU position itself in a globalised world;
  • How should the EU prepare for the coming refugee crises;
  • How to build future-oriented, digitised and yet inclusive higher education systems across the European Union.
During the preparation phase, students from all alliances have addressed some of these questions in groups, debating and discussing solutions in the form of recommendations. These will be voted on in the plenary assembly, resulting in a common position paper to be shared with European decision-makers in the framework of the Future of Europe Conference. 
 
Having paid attention to the diversity of profiles, the organising team notes that the first cohort of participants is very balanced in terms of gender (57% female, 46% male), level of education (41% undergraduates, 45% Masters and 12% PhD) and field of study, ranging from Technical Sciences to Physical Education and Business.

The students who will participate from Unite! are: Maël Le Men, Louis Rase, Eleonore Miressou-Got, Nils Maynard, Claire Grard,  Guillaume Ricard and Islam Shalik (Grenoble INP-UGA); Fernando Amador Pla and Anna Valero Casas-Aljama (Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya- Barcelona Tech); Fatma Souissi (TU Darmstadt).
According to Fernando Amador, one of our Unite! students: 

"We can make courageous and critical proposals in the face of major global challenges from a privileged perspective because the university gives us the knowledge and, on the other hand, we do not have the limitations and influences that can exist in a political sphere".

Fernando Amador, Unite! student at Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya- Barcelona Tech