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The Eastern Partnership European boasts its first-year graduates. The graduation ceremony, hosted by the project partner – New School, was attended by the Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia, Mikheil Chkhenkeli, the European Union Commissioner Budget and Administration, Johannes Hani, the Commissioner for Neighborhood Policy and EU Enlargement, Oliver Varhelyi, UNOPS Secretary-General and Executive Director, Grete Faremo and other officials. The event was held through a virtual platform - Zoom and featured about 1000 guests.
"I believe that the education received at the Eastern Partnership European School in Georgia will lay an extraordinary foundation for your future activities. We wish you a life full of opportunities, and overall success in your personal, social, and professional life and in becoming valuable members of your home country. Education based on core European values will be the most valuable investment for your future.” – stated Mikheil Chkhenkeli while addressing the students.
In 2020, the Eastern Partnership European School program had 30 graduates representing six Eastern Partnership countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova, and Ukraine. Students earned a degree from the International Baccalaureate Organization (IB) and will continue their higher education in Europe, the United States, and their respective home countries.
"The European Union will continue to invest in young people and their education. New educational opportunities will help young people move forward to find their place. This is and always has been my ambition as a European Commissioner. I am especially proud to be with you today, because the most outstanding students in this region have just graduated” - said Johannes Hahn in his speech.
The Eastern Partnership European School Program is the first phase of the EU Initiative for the Six Eastern Partnership countries, which focuses on secondary education and aims to strengthen educational opportunities for young people. Currently, 65 students are involved in the program. By September 2020, about 40 new students will join the program.
“Investment in young people is always the best idea. Promoting education will be a priority in Eastern Partnership policy in the coming years. The success of today’s graduates demonstrates, that despite the unprecedented global pandemic, the efforts of each student will yield the value we can all rely on in the future” – stated Oliver Verhelyi, EU Commissioner.
The Eastern Partnership European School program offers high quality education to students from six Eastern Partnership countries. It aims to increase the educational and employment opportunities for young people, as well as, to strengthen cooperation between the member countries, giving the students a multicultural experience, teaching them tolerance and fundamental values, as well as raising awareness about the ongoing activities of the European Union in the region. The program is implemented by UNOPS.
"Today we are proud at UNOPS. You are the first graduates of the Eastern Partnership European School Scholarship Program - an unusual program funded by the European Union and supported by our organization, as this program invests in people like you ... who can change this world for the better. We are pleased to have contributed to this process, guided by the principles of the United Nations and our common ambition to promote a sustainable future” - said Grete Faremo, Secretary-General and Executive Director of UNOPS.
The main task of the Eastern Partnership European School is to encourage secondary education opportunities in the Eastern Neighborhood of the European Union. The project aims to award a diploma from the International Baccalaureate Organization (IB) within the scope of an EU-funded scholarship program in the field of European studies. The program is designed for high school students of last two grades, who are given a unique opportunity to study IB Curriculum based on the European Standard covering History, Politics, Economics, as well as Languages, Arts and Culture.
The project is funded by the European Union and implemented by UNOPS in partnership with the Georgian International School - New School, the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia and the International Baccalaureate Organization (IB).