Tag Archives: Mobilities

Farewell MobAd!

MobAd Project, Final Meeting _Cyprus 2014

MobAd Project, Final Meeting _Cyprus 2014

Cyprus in July and a heatwave greets us. As we arrive in Nicosia – or Lefcosia as the locals know it –the temperature is already 40° C, and set to rise over the next few days to 45.8°, and that is hot!

Along with our partners from Bulgaria, Cyprus, Germany, Lithuania, Poland and Romania, we have gathered for the very last meeting of the Grundtvig project ‘Mobility Advising: a way to stimulate motivation for mobility among adult learners’.

After two years of working together on the MobAd project, it is clear that there are a number of ways in which this work can be sustained and further developed.

There is a strong feeling among the partners that mobility is a very important topic and one that could be pursued over a number of EU projects.
The main aim of this current project was to increase the number of learning mobilities undertaken between EU states, first and foremost by providing well trained staff in educational organisations acting as ‘mobility advisors’ to young and adult learners. This is a role without a specific standardised or recognised qualification, and with varying descriptions of what responsibilities it carries. By taking part in international mobility programmes delivered by these specially trained Mobility Advisors, more learners would improve their key competences and skills and thus increase their own employability, and consequently gain improved access to the labour market.

So, while sustainability can be achieved for the MobAd project in the usual way, by exploiting as many ways of disseminating our work as possible, for us that is a given. In addition, we want to take forward our work more formally, by applying for two further projects under the new Erasmus+ Programme.
One of these will be to continue the development of an accredited online course for Mobility Advisors, and the second will be to turn our attention to work we did at the start of the MobAd project in our Survey on the Barriers to Mobility. Our intention is to take this strand of the mobility process and working with young people themselves, investigate in detail how they can be better engaged, informed and motivated to participate in European mobility programmes, not only gaining vital knowledge and skills, but progress in their journey towards employability, specific job readiness, and more generally for opportunity readiness. And of course this would include the introduction of the Rickter Scale Process!

It quickly became evident that there is great variation between the participating countries in how mobilities for young people are perceived outside each country’s borders, the information that is available, the preparation for the mobility itself, the way in which the mobilities are organised and evaluated, and who in fact are the experts in this field. Particularly after completing this project, there is clearly a lot more work to be done.
It is also highly significant that the ‘Special Eurobarometer 417’, coordinated by the European Commission and only published in June 2014, records statistics about poor levels of information about mobility and even poorer figures for actual engagement. This is particularly true of the UK, where European mobilities for young people are hardly promoted at all. Even the word ‘mobilities’ is very rarely heard or understood in the UK!
It is situations like this that continue motivate the MobAd team and in particular the Rickter Company to ensure both the sustainability of the project, and its effective development in the future.

Keith Stead, CEO – The Rickter Company Ltd

MobAd: Motivation for mobility among adult learners

DSCF8607The Rickter Company is involved in a European Grundtvig Project which is looking at the role of a Mobility Adviser. This is a person who would advise on learning mobilities for students, encouraging them to travel to different countries to access courses, qualifications and to build confidence and experience.

We have already explored the barriers that prevent people from taking up mobility opportunities. These would include; family responsibilities, different food, being alone in a strange country and not speaking the language.

Keith and Nan travelled to Poznan in Poland to meet with our other partners from Germany, Cyprus, Lithuania, Bulgaria, and Romania. Our partners in Poznan hosted this meeting and looked after us incredibly well.

We are in the process of outlining a profile of the skills and expertise required by a Mobility Adviser to enable them to engage with people and to fulfil this role to the best of their ability. Through an earlier poll in all the partnership countries we discovered that the UK has the least knowledge and use of mobilities.

Our partner in Lithuania shared their vast experience of working with young people and encouraging them to engage in the mobilities programmes. They say as well as any qualifications gained, the changes in confidence and motivation when these young people return is vast.

We were lucky enough to have a little time to visit the historical parts of Poznan and view their beautiful cathedral and the Castle of Kόrnik, before flying home.

Project update: Grundtvig Learning Partnership (MobAd). Creating the MobAd Manual.

On 12 January, we welcomed our European partners from Bulgaria, Cyprus, Germany, Lithuania, and Poland to a meeting of the Grundtvig Learning Partnership Project (MobAd), held in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Unfortunately on this occasion our colleagues from Romania were unable to join us.

The partnership is an EU-funded Grundtvig Project called ‘Mobility Advising: – a way to stimulate motivation for Mobility among adult learners’. This was our fifth such meeting, with two further meetings scheduled for March in Romania and June in Cyprus.

Our meetings this time revolved around the development of the course Manual for a new skill-set to be offered to those already helping individuals make career choices or simply wanting to look at their options for further work experience or training. When people do this outside their own countries, the practice is known in Euro-speak as a ‘mobility’. We want to encourage Careers Advisors to become more informed about such opportunities by taking a specific course in Mobility Advising. Results from a survey which we carried out demonstrate the greatest need for such knowledge and skills is required right here in the UK, where the word ‘mobility’ is usually preceded by ‘shop’ or followed by ‘scooter’.

The MobAd Manual will in fact be the core product of the learning partnership. There will be four sections: “Information – Motivation – Organisation – Assessment and Evaluation” – with each chapter giving answers to frequently asked questions, such as:

  • How do I become a Mobility Adviser?
  • How do I successfully motivate people to help overcome any barriers they might have?
  • How do I evaluate the mobility process, and
  • How do I monitor the progress of the individual’s mobility?

We also spent time together taking a guided tour of historic Newcastle and enjoying a tasty social dinner in a city centre restaurant. Looking forward to meeting again in Iasi, Romania.

Invitation to participate in our MobAd Questionnaire

Learning

The Rickter Company is currently part of a Grundvig Partnership to look at the barriers to people using Mobilities to travel to other European Countries to access learning.

We are currently undertaking a survey and would like to invite you to take part by using this link: http://miroslava.licee.edu.ro/MobAd/ModAd.html

Any participation is anonymous and we would welcome your views and input. Thank you for your participation.