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400 students from 30 countries convene in Italy

Four public Italian universities in Rome – Sapienza, Tor Vergata, Roma Tre and Foro Italico – hosted more than 400 foreign students this month from 37 universities in 30 European countries at the UNICA student conference “Towards a Student-Centred University”.

Students at the UNICA conference in Sapienza, University of Rome. Photo: UNICA

UNICA is currently made up of 46 universities from 35 capital cities of Europe

Students had the unique possibility of meeting their peers from other European universities and discussing good practices from their home institutions together with areas where improvement could be made.

The conference focused on different topics related to higher education and gave students the possibility to share their experiences.

Foro Italico University dean, Fabio Pigozzi, said the event was,  “an extraordinary opportunity, not only for the cultural exchange, but above all to make even more effective the [conduit to] international collaboration, which is always the main focus among all Foro Italico University’s projects”.

The conference continued with a presentation by a representative from the European Commission who addressed the “State of the Union” following EC President Jean-Claude Juncker’s own state of the union address in September.

“An extraordinary opportunity for international collaboration”

In it, Juncker highlighted economic growth in the European Union that has outstripped that of the US over the last two years, with unemployment across the trading bloc at a nine year low.

UNICA (Network of Universities from the Capitals of Europe), was founded in 1990. It is currently made up of 46 universities from 35 capital cities of Europe, combining over 150,000 university staff and 1,800,000 students.

It seeks to facilitate international collaborations and promote academic leadership through understanding and sharing between its members throughout the European Higher Education Area.

This university network promotes excellence and cooperation between students through meetings, workshops and international projects.

The event opened at La Sapienza University of Rome, with the welcome of the four rectors of the universities of Rome and that of a student representative.

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