The TandEM project (Towards Empowered Migrant Youth in Southern Europe), led by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in partnership with EUA and COREIS Italiana, was officially launched on 12 February 2018 at a kick-off meeting in Rome. The project aims to improve higher education integration of third country nationals (TCNs), and to contribute to making societies in Croatia, Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Malta and Spain more socially inclusive.
EUA will contribute to the education-related aspect of TandEM, with a comparative cross-country study aimed at understanding TCN’s needs, and the barriers they face regarding integration and success in higher education in the six target countries. The research will document the conditions and circumstances for access, retention and completion of higher education for different types of migrants from third countries, including those with a refugee status. Concrete recommendations to remove barriers and to promote integration will be developed.
In addition, TandEM will pilot a student mentorship scheme, which will take inspiration from the cross-country study findings and from a well-established mentoring scheme carried out by WUSC (World Education Service Canada). The implementation of this pilot will be led by students, and TandEM will issue guidelines drawing from lessons learnt, so as to contribute to further upscaling and training of additional, future mentors. Several other EUA projects and activities have indeed identified mentorship and buddy schemes as useful contributions to improve refugees’ access and integration into higher education.
During the two-year project, young TCNs will contribute to shape narratives on migration and cultural diversity in the six countries. They will participate in a Southern European social media campaign emphasising youth’s multiple forms of identification, irrespective of their background. The project will also organise inter-faith dialogues involving young TCNs and their peers.