The Erasmus Experience

Coventry University by Robyn Western

Coventry University by Robyn Western

By Robyn Western


An Erasmus impact study conducted in 2014 found that the EU student exchange scheme largely boosts employability and job mobility among students involved in the project.

The study showed that students who study abroad generally fare better on the job market as graduates, and that such students are half as likely to experience long-term unemployment compared to those who have not studied abroad as a part of their university experience. Around five years after graduation the unemployment rate for Erasmus students is 23% lower.

Independent experts led by Berlin-based specialists CHE Consult, along with the Brussels Education Services received feedback from nearly 80,000 respondents including students and businesses to conduct the investigation.

The study was made up of both quantitative and qualitative research, and was compiled from data revieved from online surveys covering 34 countries.

I recently met with Becky, a Coventry university History student who spent a year at Loond University in Sweden from 2013 to 2014 through Erasmus.

Becky told me that her Erasmus experience has definitely helped her get a job; “I’ve thankfully been able to get a graduate job for coming up to when I finish my degree, mainly because of the scheme.

In interviews they would constantly ask questions about diversity, communication, and initiative and because of the diversity in my classes and the whole experience of Erasmus I was able to have such a wide variety of answers. Just having gone abroad in the first place, I think (potential employers) were quite impressed with people who have taken that step.”

Becky went on to mention the struggles students might find themselves facing whilst on an Erasmus year abroad; “Its definitely not easy, most people did it alone and went to universities in foreign countries where they knew no one. It’s just a completely different experience from anything you’ve ever done, you just learn so much from it and it would be so much easier.”

As well as the employability statistics, the study also found that around 27% of Erasmus students meet their long-term partners during their studies abroad. The Commission estimates that around one million babies are likely to have been born to Erasmus couples since 1987.




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