“Entrepreneurial Mindset for Successful Life” (EMSL) is a two-year Erasmus + project in which four different European Schools are working together to reduce youth unemployment.
These schools are: IES “Playamar” (Torremolinos, Spain), Lycée “Léonard De Vinci” (Monistrol Sur Loire, France), SNSS “Acad. Boyan Petkanchin” (Haskovo, Bulgaria) and IIS “Della Corte Vanvitelli” (Cava de’ Tirreni, Italy)
Our project stimulates and motivates students to develop innovative thinking, find new opportunities to put their creative ideas into practice and work in an international environment. We want our students to have a creative approach to solving different types of problems in life, an approach that is based on acquiring long life learning knowledge to move forward.
With this initiative we are fostering entrepreneurship and proactive labour behaviour among young people, schools and local businesses and institutions.
We believe in the education system as an indispensable tool in the training of responsible European citizens. That is why another of the fundamental objectives of our project is the improvement of this educational system through the exchange of good educational practices at a European level.
How are we reaching these ambitious goals?
- Providing quality innovative education in entrepreneurship at European level.
- All the centres participating in the project have collaborated in the creation of an entrepreneurship training programme. This programme will serve other schools that do not teach subjects related to entrepreneurship as a training tool in entrepreneurship.
- Local government agencies that work in the promotion of entrepreneurship have actively collaborated in the training of our students. They have learned first-hand what resources are provided by different governments in each country to promote entrepreneurship.
- We have created synergistic relationships with local entrepreneurs in each of the four localities that make up the project. It has been the successful experiences of local entrepreneurs that have provided the most motivating training for our students.
- Encouraging the acquisition of the skills and competences that will make our students key tools in the reduction of youth unemployment in Europe.
- By exposing our students to new situations in a multicultural environment where they could not use their mother tongue to communicate, we have enabled them to develop creative thinking and improve their English language skills. Moreover, it has facilitated active, responsible and conscious citizenship respecting cultural beliefs and lifestyles that are different from the ones they already know as the ‘norm’. These situations have broadened students’ minds and experience to work and cope in an unusual environment
- By working in international teams to develop work using new technologies that subsequently had to be presented to a large audience, our students have improved their language skills, their knowledge of new technologies as well as their self-confidence.
- Fostering creative thinking by providing our students with an international supportive work environment where their ideas can be shared and validated by peers.
- Collaborating in different activities with universities in each country we have created a synergy between different educational levels. These activities have helped our students to improve their academic and career orientation.
- Prioritizing as our methodologies learning by doing and interdisciplinary project work. One of our main achievements is the creation by our students of four companies. Some key ideas in our methodology have been the following:
- Application of the training received to analyse the viability of their business using the CANVAS method.
- Discussing their ideas with the different entrepreneurs and local businesses that collaborate with our project.
- Collaboration and advice of the different didactic departments in each school for the creation of the companies. Promotion of European values: Several of our companies have a clear social component.
- Creating synergies with different organizations, institutions and companies. Improving the existing relationship and creating new ones. Broadening our stakeholders network.
- Local governments have been involved in receiving European partners at each mobility.
- Relations have been established with various universities. In two of the mobilities, teachers and students visited the facilities of these universities and received information about their links with the business sector.
- A group of businesspeople in each locality advised the students in the creation of their companies. In addition, at each mobility, students from other countries had the opportunity to visit and learn from entrepreneurs in the localities they visited.
- Relationships have also been established with NGOs. The NGO “Acción contra el Hambre” advised Spanish students on social entrepreneurship. The promotion of European values has been one of our priorities and contact with NGOs has helped us to highlight the importance of these values: respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, rule of law and respect for human rights.
- The local media have taken an interest in the project and published news about its development.
- Promoting a strategic exchange of good practices in education on EU-level. We have created a long-term partnership between our four schools to exchange experience and good practices in education.
- The Italian and Bulgarian schools held workshops on the e‑twinning platform. Centres like the Spanish one, without previous experience, now have in this platform a useful tool for collaborative work among their students.
- The Spanish school trained its partners in educational coaching, methodologies for the promotion of gender equality in educational centres, and bilingual education.
- The French centre provided training for creation of web pages for educational purposes using the WordPress platform.
- The Bulgarian centre provided training in the use of different digital tools in the classroom such as “auras”.
- The exchange of good educational practices also extended to the field of management. The directors of the four schools held a working session in France on school management.
We can conclude that the dynamics of work in all the schools has been clearly improved thanks to this exchange.
This relationship will continue beyond the project, and new joint work initiatives are already being discussed.