Columbia University opens an International Education Center in Athens

Niki Kerameus Columbia University

The establishment of an International Education Center of New York's Columbia University in Athens was announced on Sunday by its president Lee Bollinger as part of the visit of a delegation of 30 leading US Universities to Greece.

The Center is expected to welcome the first students in 2023, with the aim of enriching the teaching, scientific and research work that is developing in Greece in osmosis with of Greek educational institutes.

As the Ministry of Education stated in its announcement, "this is the culmination of an intensive effort that began at the end of 2019 and is being announced today (i.e. yesterday), the first day of the mission of 30 American universities to our country."

The effort to strengthen the Institutions' shift to international collaborations is structured around three axes, which have been implemented by the Ministry of Education:

- Establishment of a new legislative framework which provides further freedom to Greek universities to establish a wider range of collaborations (e.g. public/ double degrees, joint research centers, summer and winter study programs) and automatic academic recognition of degrees from abroad.

- Provision of extensive financial tools to support universities in this endeavour, for example:
20 million euros for internationalisation actions for Greek Higher Education Institutions and 60 million euros for the visiting professor program.

- Cultivating strategic academic relationships with key players such as Europe, the United States, the United Kingdom, among others.

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