Erasmus Student Network (ESN) is the biggest student association in Europe. It was born on the 16th October 1989 and legally registered in 1990 for supporting and developing student exchange.
Present in more than 1000 Higher Education Institutions from 42 countries, the network is constantly developing and expanding. Having around 15,000 active members that are in many sections supported by so-called buddies mainly taking care of international students.
ESN involves around
- 50,000 young people
- 350,000 international students every year benefit from it’s services
ESN activates on 3 levels: Local, National and International.
Presence in Romania
In Romania, we are present in 12 cities, collaborating with more than 40 universities, with approximately 400 volunteers providing help to approximately 3500 international students who come to Romania each year.
But who are we?
A group of young people who voluntarily put their effort in helping international students integrate and provide opportunities for cultural understanding and self-development for students of Romania and not only. Volunteers across the country, no matter their sections work together to add value to the Erasmus+ students’/trainees’ experiences and also get to develop their hard and soft skills, reaching ESN’s mission of “Enrichment of society through international students”.
The first local section of Erasmus Student Network in Romania was born in 2004, when ESN Cluj-Napoca was accepted within the network and since then more and more people started to believe in the mission and vision of Erasmus Student Network and joined it. Today ESN Romania has 14 local sections in 12 cities: ESN Alba-Iulia, ESN ASE Bucharest, ESN Bacău, ESN Brașov, ESN Cluj-Napoca, ESN Constanța, ESN Craiova, ESN Iași, ESN Poli, ESN Sibiu, ESN Suceava, ESN Târgu Mureș, ESN Timișoara și ESN UniBucharest. Currently, we also have one candidate section: CS ESN Oradea.
What do we stand for?
- unity in diversity, diversity in the unity (we all have different backgrounds, but share one common aim and goal)
- students helping students (we passionately commit ourselves to volunteering for the benefits of others)
- fun in friendship and respect (we enjoy relations based on respect)
- international dimension of the life (we are open-minded, mobile, like to discover and explore, to co-operate and to interact to break borders)
- love for Europe as an area of peace and cultural exchange (we live and benefit from the cultural richness of Europe to the utmost)
- openness with tolerance (we understand and accept others and learn from them)
- cooperation in the integration (we share a holistic view towards internationality)
Who benefits from our work?
The students returning from an exchange are being supported in the reintegration process in their home country by keeping contact with an international environment. Many local sections are set up by former exchange students, often because they have had good experiences from their exchange period or because they felt a lack of help during their exchange. They also understand better the issues and challenges in a foreign environment.
However, the main focus of ESN is placed on current exchange students, who might often face problems in their new environments. Therefore, ESN offers help in the academic, social and practical integration process. This is mainly done through activities in the local sections, which include cultural and social events such as trips to various places within the country, film nights, language projects, international food festivals and last, but not least, parties. In addition to that, many sections have introduced mentor systems, which help the international students mainly in academic and practical integration.
ESN also provides relevant information and encourages the future exchange students to gain the international experience and gain relevant insight into different cultures.