The UNIMED General Assembly took place last 12th and 13th December in Rome at the premises of the Link Campus University and the University of International Studies of Rome (UNINT). The yearly main event of the Association is the occasion where the Rectors, Presidents and their representatives of UNIMED Associated universities meet to exchange views and to determine policy for UNIMED, setting the stage for a full and rich year of initiatives, activities and conferences which shape the academic calendar around the Mediterranean.
In the event organised under the patronage of Commissioner Johannes Hahn, member of the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Anna Lindh Foundation, around 150 attendees took part from almost 20 countries of both shores of the Mediterranean.
After the opening messages and greetings provided by Prof. Francisco Matte Bon, UNIMED President and Rector of University of International Studies of Rome, Prof. Hmaid Ben Aziza, UNIMED Secretary General, Mrs. Rima Mattar, Vice President of Holy Spirit University of Kaslik and Mr. Vincenzo Scotti, President of Link Campus University, political representatives, Mr. Andrea Cozzolino and Mr. Enrico Granara addressed the audience their institutional greetings.
During the morning of the first day, after the presentation of UNIMED current activities and future plans showed by Mr. Marcello Scalisi, UNIMED Director, Mr. Besnik Mustafaj ,Writer and former Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Albania, in his keynote speech underlined the important role of the universities in the cooperation and integration between the two shores of the Mediterranean “People need to understand each other in order to cooperate together. South Mediterranean countries are only partially known as only partial truths are displayed. Universities are in first line to remedy this.”
The first day mainly focused on the new challenges for the Euro-Med cooperation, perspectives for the higher education world in the next future, the role of higher education for employability and entrepreneurship and the new opportunities for the academic cooperation in the region. The screening of the documentary “When you can’t go back”, by the Italian filmmaker, Mr. Leonardo Cinieri Lombroso, concluded this day of work.
The second day offered the opportunity to attend parallel workshops on e-Leaning and Open Education and student’s mobility experiences and impacts: two among the thematics UNIMED is focusing on. Fruitful sessions were also dedicated to the Euro-Med cooperation in Research and Innovation as well as to the topic of Universities’ Social Responsibility and the consequent contribution of academics to the Sustainable Development Goals.
Moreover, the General Assembly was the occasion to nominate Prof. Wail Benjelloun, former UNIMED President, UNIMED honorary President. He has distinguished himself during his term for his commitment and internationalist vocation which guaranteed important opportunities for exchange and discussion nourishing the positive aspects of the Mediterranean region.
The translations during the two-day event in Italian, English and French were provided by the students of the University of International Studies of Rome (UNINT).
To find out more on the programme of the whole event, please click here
You can download here the UNIMED General Assembly press release.