1st year students at the Committee of Regions, November 2011

Intensive Seminar in Brussels and Luxembourg is a part of European Studies Masters Programme at University of Latvia. The aim of the Seminar is to deepen and broaden the knowledge about the EU by visiting key EU institutions and NATO. This is a great opportunity to have briefings by representatives of the main institutions and participate in discussions with international experts and officials on current EU issues.

The Intensive Seminar in Brussels 2011, entitled “EU potential in the current crisis,” took place from 21st to 25th November.

This year students visited NATO, the Court of Justice of the European Union in Luxembourg and other key EU institutions. The group was invited by the DG Education and Culture to attend the Global Jean Monnet Conference in Brussels. It was an unique opportunity to listen to speeches by Mr José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission; Mr Jan Truszczyński,  Director General for Education and Culture at the European; Ms Androulla Vassiliou, Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth. The key note speeches were given by Mr Robert Mundell, Nobel Prize Economics; University Professor of Economics at Columbia University; father of the theory of optimum currency areas. Mr Viscount Etienne Davignon, Belgian Minister of State; former Vice-President of the European Commission shared his view on the current EU problems.


Javier Mendoza Jiménez, European Studies Master Programme student expressed his impressions about the Intensive Seminar:

“We lived an unforgettable experience during this week in which we had the opportunity to learn about the most important European institutions directly from the institutions themselves, like the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Court of Justice.

Guided by the high quality speeches and briefings from experienced experts and officials, the students of the University of Latvia, at times together with the students of the University of Bremen, had the opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge of the different mechanisms, problems and solutions that EU institutions have to face in daily work. Additionally, students had the opportunity to gain insight into the personal opinions of EU officials regarding interesting topics such as the current economic situation in the EU.

The highlight of the intensive seminar was the Global Jean Monnet Conference where we had the opportunity of listen to Mr Robert Mundell, Nobel Prize Winner in Economics, and his new proposal for the future organization of Europe.

During the seminar, our visit to the Latvian Representation in the EU and the speeches of Mrs Ilze Juhansone, Latvian Ambassador and Mrs Inese Allika, representative of Latvian Central Bank put a particular emphasis on the role of Latvia inside the European Union.

To conclude, after those amazing five days, I´m even more convinced that, in spite of the problems, the heart of Europe will continue beating strong in the future.


More detailed information on Intensive Seminar 2011 schedule is available here.