A European young student shares his thoughts on Quality Education

European Youth Insights is a platform provided by the European Youth Forum and the European Sting, to allow young people to air their views on issues that matter to them. The following entry is written by Arif Shala,  doctoral student at the Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich, Germany.

Arif Shala is a a doctoral student at the Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich, Germany and executive director at the Institute for Economic Development Studies in Prishtine, Kosovo.

Arif Shala is a a doctoral student at the Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich, Germany and executive director at the Institute for Economic Development Studies in Prishtine, Kosovo.

By 2020 Europe aspires to have a smart, sustainable and inclusive economy, to which education is the key component. So far Europe aims to reach this goal by creating partnerships, domestically and internationally, supporting student mobility and finally by creating a compatible and comparable higher education system. In addition much is being done to create the right mindset and skills to foster European entrepreneurial culture. In achieving this goal EU has allocated 14.7 billion Euro to the Erasmus+ program for the time frame 2014 to 2020.

The present economic crises is challenging education and training systems of Europe in two major ways. First is the matter of investing in growth policies, a vital part of which are the education and training policies, with the pressing issue of consolidating public finance. Additionally, youth unemployment has reached 23.2% and the EU structures cannot tolerate it to continue. In the economic sense, education and training exert influence on innovation and productivity which is why it is a source of growth and contributes to the employment of population, including youth. Half of member states have stopped investing in education and training while the current crises urges them to strengthen the results of education and training systems as well as intervene by making the systems relevant to labor market needs. Recent studies which evaluate the impact of investment in education are arguing for a better match between education and world of work. In changing policies the responsibility lies with national governments however the EU structures can offer significant support.

The number of students aiming for degrees is increasing. Around 60% of students in countries of Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) are expected to begin higher education during their life. It is also expected that demand for higher education will increase from 97 million students in 2000 to over 262 million in 2025. The same trend of increase in the demand for education is expected to heat Europe in the years to come. By 2020 EU aspires to improve on employment, innovation, education social inclusion and climate. It is expected that by the deadline school drop out to fall below 10 % and 40% of 30-34 year olds to complete third level of education. Member states underwent major changes such as the Bologna Process in order to transform EU in a knowledge economy and an international competitor. The recent developments have pushed education towards economization. Experts are voicing their worries about the economization of education and not providing students with the skills of the 21cetury.

The first issue is the fact that education has been tightly linked to the economy. Viewing education in terms of economic gains is a very biased and dangerous perspective. As a result of this tendency courses and study programs are being designed to fit the needs of the market, and not to promote knowledge for the interest of the individual and academic progress. If this trend continuous it should be of no surprise when university studies become nothing more than vocational training to meet the needs of prospective employers. In addition, the new century may mark the time when subjects such as history, archaeology and philosophy will be sacrificed for the sake of law, economics and business studies. However, it is postulated that European education could improve if more will be done to promote cultural exchange, knowledge dissemination, better allocation of intellectual resources, and valuing the intellectual heritage of Europe.

The main mission of higher education is to enable people to learn. In this rapidly changes world, European graduates need a type of education that allows them to be active, committed, thinking, economic factors and global citizens. The new technologies offer many ways to make learning effective, engaging and inclusive. This form of learning can easily be made creative and innovative, but Europe is failing in using new technologies to meet the needs of learners. The

limiting factor in using technology is the lack of digital competencies. Many experts are arguing that the “right” skills for the 21 century are the digital competencies. It is a reason to worry that only 30-35 % of students in EU countries are digitally confident.

Investment in education presents a challenging task for states in the ongoing economic crisis. On the other side, investing in education is key to growth and employment. It is generally accepted that a skilled and educated workforce leads to productivity gains, wealth and innovation.  Consequently, investment in education equals to investment in the future, and it should continue.

It is evident that when economic crisis hit, political discussions tend to focus in education.   Experts agree on the fact that education and especially higher education, is the factor that fights the crisis, and manages to create a stabile and competitive economy that will overcome future crisis. Therefore, most would agree that investing public funds in education is reasonable. It is unfortunate that when the crisis hits, education funds are cut drastically, which may well be due to the fact that education is the highest public expenditure and the idea that education is a luxury that society cannot afford during economic adversity.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Featured Stings

On Human Rights Day European Youth Forum calls for end to discrimination of young people

This afternoon Britain will be once more isolated from mainland Europe

Eurozone: Disinflation engulfs the industrial goods sector

Vulnerable young people must not be blamed & stigmatised for violent radicalisation

Britain and Germany change attitude towards the European Union

Alice in Colombia

The Parliament defies a politically biased Banking Union

The big challenge of leadership and entrepreneurship in Europe

Eurozone’s north-south growth gap to become structural

On the euro but out of it?

EU sets ambitious targets for the Warsaw climate conference

Intel @ MWC14: Our Love Story with Mobile – Transforming Wireless Networks

Trump asked Merkel to pay NATO arrears and cut down exports ignoring the EU

Everybody against Germany over the expensive euro

Doctors without borders

Arlington, USA: kick-off of the fifth round of the EU-US boxing match

European Confederation of Junior Enterprises hosts in Geneva the Junior Enterprise World Conference

ECB embarks on the risky trip to Eurozone banking universe

Medical students: The need for emigration

While EU Open Days 2013 discuss the 2020 strategy, Microsoft shares a glimpse of EU 2060

The scary EU elections result and the delayed Council’s repentance

China’s stock markets show recovery signs while EU is closely watching in anticipation of the €10bn investment

Germany fears that Americans and Russians want to partition Europe again

Trailing the US-EU economic confrontation

YOUTH RIGHTS AT RISK FROM RISE OF EXTREME-RIGHT AND POPULISTS IN THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT

EU to negotiate an FTA with Japan

ECB readies itself for extraordinary monetary measures defying Germany

Zhua Zhou: Choosing The Future

Marco Polo’s Dream

Any doubt?

Happens now in Brussels: Green Week sets the EU and global climate policy agenda

The completion of the European Banking Union attracts billions of new capital for Eurozone banks

Germany to help China in trade disputes with Brussels

Exchanges of medical students and the true understanding of global health issues

Access to health in the developped and developing world

Will the EU ever tackle the migration crisis despite the lack of political will?

GSMA Mobile 360: Connecting Cities, Connecting Lives, Connecting Europe

French elections: by the time the EU economy revives and the migration crisis is solved extremists could take over Europe

The next 48 hours may change the European Union

Nitrate pollution of water sources: new impulses for EU Water Policy?

18th European Forum on Eco-innovation live from Barcelona: What’s next for eco-labelling?

Intel, Almunia and 1 billion euros for unfair potatoes

COP21 Breaking News_03 December: Europe’s children urge leaders to commit to climate action at UN Climate Summit in Paris

No better year for the EU’s weak chain links

Can Kiev make face to mounting economic problems and social unrest?

EU and Amazon cut deal to end antitrust investigation over e-books deals

COP21 Breaking News_03 December: There is a new draft agreement on the negotiating table

Fear casts again a cold, ugly shadow over Europe; Turkey sides with Russia

The European Commission cuts roaming charges. But “it’s not enough”…

A hot autumn after a cool summer for Europe

EU-US to miss 2015 deadline and even lose Germany’s support in TTIP’s darkest week yet

Can the banking union help Eurozone counter its imminent threats?

Should Europe be afraid of the developing world?

Access to ‘affordable’ medicines in India: challenges & solutions

Is Europe misjudging its abilities to endure more austerity and unemployment?

IMF – World Bank meetings: US – Germany clash instituted, anti-globalization prospects visualized

Global Citizen – Volunteer Internships

10 months were not enough for the EU to save the environment but 2 days are

The EU accuses Russia of bullying Ukraine to change sides

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s