We met with our 2021-2022 Academic Year Jean Monnet Scholars in Brussels. Our scholars, who continue their education in European Union member countries and the United Kingdom, came together with representatives of the Directorate for EU Affairs Project Implementation Department, the Central Finance and Contracts Unit and Jean Monnet Scholarship Programme Project Technical Assistance Team on 12-13 May 2022.
The study visit started with a dinner, which provided opportunity for the scholars to get to know each other better and to form networks. At the dinner, the Head of Project Implementation Department of the Directorate for EU Affairs, A. Hakan Atik and Central Finance and Contracts Unit Acting Senior Procurement Manager, Saygın Tozlu gave welcome speeches.
The first day of the programme, which included extensive meetings, started with the opening speech of the Permanent Representative of Türkiye to the EU, Ambassador Mehmet Kemal Bozay. European Parliament’s Rapporteur on Türkiye Nacho Sanchez Amor, and Katerina Fatsea from European Commission evaluated the current situation in Türkiye-European Union relations and answered questions from scholars. After the programme, in which the scholars exchanged views and showed great interest, study visit group went to Bruges, Belgium for a visit to the College of Europe. Within the scope of the visit, the Communication Officer of the College of Europe, Margaux Cognard, made an introductory presentation about the College. Stef Borgers, Academic Assistant at the EU International Relations and Diplomacy Department, provided information on the EU and its decision-making mechanisms. In the evening of the same day, Jean Monnet scholars were hosted by TÜSİAD (Turkish Industry & Business Association) Brussels Representative Dilek Aydın.
The second day of the programme started with a visit to the European Commission. In the session titled “The Role and Priorities of the European Commission”, Senior Expert Petr Mooz briefed the scholars, while the current situation on the “Green Deal” and “Climate Diplomacy” was presented by the European Commission Policy Officer, Fabien Porcher.
The afternoon session started with the opening speech of Economic Development Foundation and Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Türkiye Representative Haluk Nuray at TOBB Brussels Representative Office. In the session titled “Internship, Job and Research Opportunities in the EU”, Celine Nellen and Sohail Luka from the European Commission and Anthony Lockett from the European Research Council introduced different internship, scholarship and research opportunities offered by the EU.
At the last session of the programme on “Lobbying and Networking in EU Affairs”, presentations were made by Political Science and European Studies Lecturer at Université libre de Bruxelles and Jean Monnet alumna, Dr. Seda Gürkan, Resident Senior Fellow at the German Marshall Fund in Brussels Kadri Taştan, and İpek Tekdemir, Secretary General of the EUTürkiye Friendship Group.
The study visit programme brought together experts from different fields in order to inspire Jean Monnet scholars in making their future plans and ended after the Jean Monnet Programme Coordinators of the Directorate for EU Affairs made a general evaluation of the event.