First Alliance Day for the EUGLOH European Alliance of Universities

On November 10, 2020, the members of the EUGLOH Alliance organised their Alliance Day to celebrate its first year and inform the public about its many opportunities.

A full year after its creation, the EUGLOH Alliance offered participants an all-online event packed with debates, presentations and activities, with the aim to present students, researchers and administrative staff alike with the different facets of global health that the European University Alliance for Global Health has to offer.

Created in 2019, following the European Commission’s European Universities Initiative, EUGLOH is coordinated by Paris-Saclay University and brings together 4 other European partner-universities: Lund University in Sweden, Ludwig-Maximilians Universität MÜnchen (LMU Munich) in Germany, University of Porto in Portugal, and University of Szeged in Hungary. The Alliance aims to create a pilot European University, driven by European values and committed to higher education and training on challenges related to global health and well-being, with one key asset, unique among European universities born from the initiative, that of large-scale facilities.

The Alliance thus gave rise to more than 907 staff mobility experiences over the past year, as well as 1,196 student mobility experiences. It also led to the creation of 23 innovative short training programmes, the funding of 1 EMJMD project, 1 strategic partnership and successfully applied for additional funding in research and innovation through the "European Alliance for Global Health – Transformation through Joint Research and Innovation Action” (EUGLOHRIA). All this was achieved in spite of the complicated context linked to the pandemic.

Over 200 participants from all 5 countries online at one given time were offered a full programme. The Alliance Day was hosted by students and staff from our 5 universities and opened by Prof. Sandrine Lacombe, VP for International and European Affairs at Paris-Saclay University, and Coordinator of the project. Her introduction was followed by a roundtable on different campus experiences specific to each university, a photo contest awards ceremony, and a virtual fair on a range of areas linked to global health (the future of medicine, digital health/technologies for health and well-being, climate change, environmental hazards, biodiversity, social and human sciences for global health, and healthy life and well-being).

The day was rounded off by a series of intercultural quizzes and games as well as a live concert by AZAWAN, with the support of our Music and Performing Art Department from the Université d’Evry Val-d’Essonne.

The Alliance Day was a great opportunity for staff and students alike to know more about EUGLOH. At the University of Porto, Prof Pedro Graça, from the Faculty of Nutrition and Food Science, led the session dedicated to “Healthy Life and Well-being: Eating well on Campus”. Although he was familiar with EUGLOH, thanks to the Alliance Day, he discovered more about the partner universities as well as life on campus and the different projects under way.

Several members of staff from Paris-Saclay University lauded the roundtable, which enabled them to see how students and staff perceive the campuses. They also enjoyed hearing about a typical day for a student and felt that, in spite of the online event, they had “travelled throughout Europe”!

Maria Inês Pinhão, a psychology student at Porto University, member of the EUGLOH student board, and who participated in the organisation of the intercultural quizzes and games, was very pleased with the joint work on the organisation of the event, which did not feel like it was online at all: “It was […] very delightful to know the other organizers from the different countries and to see that [together], everything is easier and more enjoyable!”

The EUGLOH Alliance looks forward to a second edition next spring, which will, no doubt, be packed full of surprises and fun!

Find out more about the Alliance Day 2020 here.