The latest Erasmus + Indire Information data confirms the growth of Erasmus placements in 2015-2016, even in comparison with the first estimates published. In fact, 7,666 students have left from the Italian universities for internships in overseas companies, 20% more than in the previous year, reaching 7,952 when considering mobility funded throughout the entire 2015 Call period.
Compared with other countries traditionally prone to the internship experience, Italy gained positions from previous years, ranking third in Europe after France and Germany, who funded respectively 12,737 and 8,090 students in mobility for traineeships.
“Internships abroad – says Flaminio Galli, General Director of the Erasmsus + Indirect National Agency – are an important confrontation opportunity for our young people. Thanks to this experience they can challenge themselves, acquire skills and greatly increase their chances of finding employment once they return to Italy. Italian young people taking part in apprenticeships in European companies are highly appreciated for their ability in facing challenges, problem solving and their entrepreneurial spirit. For many students, mobility abroad proved useful, providing a clearer picture of individual professional goals. ”
Spain, the United Kingdom and Germany are the preferred destinations for European students who intend to undertake an internship abroad; Italy occupies the fifth position with 4,840 hosted foreign students.
The characteristics of the Erasmus internship in Italy
As in mobility for the purposes of study, also Erasmus placements saw a shift in departures in the post-graduate cycle of studies: 67% of students in mobility enrolled in a master degree/single cycle degree, 26% in a three-year degree course and 7% in a Ph.D. In 34.6% of the cases, the traineeship was conducted as part of the curriculum, 42.4% of the students chose it, although it was not mandatory, while the remaining 23% was allocated to 1,688 newly graduates, whose participation in 2014 and 2015 increased by 30%. The number of female students is 63% of all Italian trainees. The young Erasmus students from the Italian universities selected mainly Spain (1,743), the United Kingdom (1,537), Germany (789), France (703) and Belgium (463).
To hold the primacy in Italy is Alma Mater in Bologna with 436 Erasmus trainees, followed by the University of Sassari, with 364, and the University of Rome La Sapienza, with 349 grants allocated.
The analysis of the questionnaires that participants have completed at the end of their mobility experience shows how to challenge oneself, acquire skills, increase the chances of work in Italy and abroad are among the main motivations that push a young person to leave on the Erasmus programme for a traineeship. Looking towards the future, for many of them the experience has proved to be precious, as more than 80% of students said they had a clearer idea of their professional goals.