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Development of entrepreneurship, creativity and teamwork skills for students and teachers in VET
Start date: 01 Jun 2016, End date: 31 Jul 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

During the last years of economic crisis, Cyprus has suffered both recession and unemployment, leading to serious social distress. While various government programmes and initiatives encourage hiring young people, the situation is still very difficult. In September 2015, youth unemployment rate in Cyprus was 32 %. According to psychologists, the consequences of unemployment to young people include deprivation of their identity in the society, deprivation of personal and social fulfillment, loss of confidence, anxiety, depression, lack of economic independence, psychological, social and economic problems.As finding employment is a hard job for all, entrepreneurship gains more and more importance. Embarking on a new business venture can be the only way for some people to take their fate into their own hands and create a job for themselves. Many people however, do not posses the necessary entrepreneurial drive and skills for such a journey. The ENTERPRISE project aims to increase entrepreneurship of young people - VET students - as well as the ability of VET teachers to influence the development of these skills and competences - by offering opportunities to acquire experience abroad, improve intercultural communication and language skills, as well as strengthen the self-confidence and independence of students and pedagogical competences of teachers.The consortium will organise 40 2-week mobilities for VET students and 16 1-week mobilities for VET teachers from Cyprus in the Netherlands. The placements are planned in four flows, two for teachers and two for students, between January and June 2017. Each flow of students may have 1 accompanying person (if the students are under-aged).The project partners are a national consortium of 5 private and public VET organisations in Cyprus and a host company - business development, support and training organisation in the Netherlands; they have discussed the aims and conditions of placements having in mind the interests of potential participants. Preliminary training plans were developed and are enclosed with the proposal.The work placements will focus on the development of entrepreneurial thinking and business planning/ management tools. Innovative tools and methodologies, such as the Business Model Canvas and Lego Serious Play, will be employed to address issues relating to Business Strategy and Entrepreneurship.Entrepreneurship and knowledge of business planning is relevant and important for students from most study fields. The participants from various study programmes will mix during their mobilities, exchanging ideas and different perspectives. A mix of student and teacher mobilities and ability to experience the same business training/ development approach used by the host organisation in the Netherlands, is expected to lead to a valuable discussion, increased interaction of students and teachers and stronger impact on their home schools and the uptake of new effective teaching methods.The participants will be chosen on the basis of pre-defined selection criteria. They will receive preparation training in Cyprus before the placements; the receiving organisation will provide orientation and support upon arrival in the host country. The placements will be monitored by project promoter, sending schools and the host organisation. The participants will receive Europass Mobility Document and a certificate from the host company. Cultural development programme will be offered as well.Dissemination Plan will be developed and implemented jointly by project partners and participants. A dissemination event will be organised in the end of the project, aiming to exchange experiences and present the project to VET schools and students in Cyprus as well as other stakeholders.Experience of living and working abroad opens horizons, creates new opportunities and is extremely beneficial for any person. Work and living in different cultural environment will contribute to all participants' personal and professional development. The students will get ready to pro-actively pursue their career goals and find employment they wish for, or create their own workplace; the participating teachers will enhance their pedagogical competences and acquire knowledge of new methodologies and tools. The participating organisations will benefit from increased international cooperation, exchange of experiences in training and entrepreneurship development, and staff involvement in this international project. The sending schools will offer an additional development opportunity to their students and teachers, enriching their offer and providing better service, and increasing their competitiveness in VET. The project is a result of a lasting cooperation between the project promoter and the partner organisation in the Netherlands, as well as local partners - VET schools/ colleges in Cyprus, and we expect smooth implementation and enriching experience for the participants.
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