Diversity Month: Europe as a Workplace - Overcoming Borders, Discovering Cultures, Celebrating Successes Together

You're well aware that Montanuni is a renowned technical university with unique traditions since your first semester in Leoben. But did you also know that you are officially a student at a "European University"?

The Erasmus+ programme of the European Union has created so-called "university alliances", which offer participating universities the opportunity to expand their international networks, strengthen their reputation and improve the quality of their educational offers. Through interdisciplinary exchange and the joint development of new programmes and projects, they contribute to the internationalisation and modernisation of European higher education.

Since 2021, our alma mater has also been part of such an alliance - more precisely, the "European University on Responsible Consumption and Production" - "EURECA-PRO" for short. Together with eight other universities from all over Europe, this alliance bundles competences around one of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 12).

Our team - Mary, Lisa and Anna - work as student assistants at EURECA-PRO and have to deal with a wide variety of personalities, cultural backgrounds and in an interdisciplinary environment and would like to share some of our experiences with you.


"I have always dreamed of broadening my horizons and gaining valuable experience beyond the borders of my home country Ukraine. I was on many volunteering projects before to teach SDGs in schools in Italy and Greece. Gained experience is extremely priceless, you grow very fast as a person, learn languages, learn about different cultures, beliefs and perspectives. Joining Eureca-Pro is a transformative experience that has not only enriched my professional skills but also exposed me to diverse range of cultures, ideas and perspectives. The experience I gain here everyday is amazing! Working and communicating in English, learning German, organizing events, communication with people from different countries- what can be better for Ukrainian student that move to Austria to study a second degree? I encourage fellow students to seize every opportunity to engage with the international community as it will undoubtedly pave the way for a successful and fulfilling future."


"What I particularly appreciate about EURECA-PRO are diverse perspectives and approaches that result from working in an intercultural and interdisciplinary team. Maybe you are familiar with this feeling - sometimes you get stuck in your little "bubble" and lose perspective. At EURECA-PRO, I’ve learned that every now and then, it can be very beneficial to think outside the box, because different approaches won’t only broaden your horizon, but can also lead into new and innovative ideas to overcome even big challenges. In doing so, you have to step out of your comfort zone, but it will be rewarded with new insights and personal growth!
Thanks to EURECA-PRO, I regularly have the chance to attend international conferences and workshops, to improve my education and to meet people from all over Europe. The atmosphere in the consortium is very familiar, warm and characterized by a strong sense of unity."


"I was lucky enough to spend time in India after my A-levels. I was able to be part of an organisation that builds homes for women and children. Even then I realised that I wanted to work internationally and enjoy the differences between the various cultures and people. Even if it is only the small differences, such as facial expressions and gestures, they can mean very different things. At the beginning I was surprised why my Indian colleagues answered with 'Yes' but shook their heads. I realised that not only the spoken language changes from country to country, but also the body language. EURECA-PRO gives me the opportunity to work with many different people and their cultures during my studies. Our partner universities are far away from each other, which is why we mostly only communicate via email and video chat. However, EURECA-PRO also allows us to get to know each other better at conferences, joint workshops or simply by visiting each other. This makes it possible to get a deeper understanding of each other and to build a strong team together.
Now it's your turn, use the possibilities of our common "European University" and start your international adventure."

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