The European Engineering Learning Innovation and Science Alliance (EELISA) is an alliance of universities that brings students and staff to collaborate closer on a European Engineering Degree. The Alliance was created 2 years ago and it gathers 9 institutions, among which Université Paris Sciences et Lettres (PSL), also a YERUN member (Université Paris Dauphine-PSL).
Since its foundation, the partners have been able to develop a wide range of activities and started to see the first impacts of such an ambitious project.
They have been able to work at several levels:
- Engineering degrees: a shared definition of EELISA engineering profile and the learning outcomes for EELISA degrees were published. At the moment, there is no shared understanding of what being a European engineer means. EELISA is taking important steps in defining the profile of the future European Engineer. This work will support the creation of a European degree (still to be defined) and nurture others.
- Challenge based approach: relying on the concept of communities, the alliance created 35 of them. They gather students, and academic and non-academic staff who have a common objective to tackle sustainable development goals (SDGs) by developing new (training) activities. A dedicated IT platform has been set up and provides visibility to communities. The process is entirely bottom-up via open calls. The most challenging aspect is to make those communities truly EELISA-wide as they rely mostly on bi- or trilateral relations. PSL, is leader of 5 communities and several PSL component institutions (including Université Dauphine – PSL) participate in them. You can read more here. https://psl.eu/actualites/cinq-laureats-de-lappel-projets-pour-lemergence-de-communautes-eelisa) .
- Mobility: the alliance works progressively to harmonise its process to facilitate Erasmus mobilities between members. It issued its 1st call for mobility in October 2022. It also relies on a course catalogue (+500 entries) that will be published very soon. Opening courses is one way to develop links between members.
- Recognition: the most innovative aspect related to mobility and community is the set-up of a dedicated recognition system. EELISA members can deliver credentials to recognise student engagement towards the SDGs and EELISA supplement for transnational experiences.
- Gender balance and inclusiveness: thanks to synergies with the research part of EELISA, workshops and forums have been organised to disseminate best practices among partners.
Being part of EELISA is being part of a community where members share similar goals and objectives and work together on concrete activities. Even though achieving a level of common understanding and knowledge of each other and the implementation of joint projects is not easy, by working on concrete activities, partners have been able to set up a stimulating environment where reciprocal trust is growing. The aim for the future is to engage with many more people within the members institutions so that EELISA can be an efficient way to make students and staff more European.