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Information on the Traineeships Bernheim Foundation and the College of Europe.
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Traineeships Bernheim Foundation

Since 2003, university students have been participating in professional initiation trainings on the construction of Europe, organized at the FPS Foreign Affairs. These students are named “Bernheim trainees” after the internationally renowned twentieth century Belgian entrepreneur and president of the “l’Innovation” department store established by his family in Brussels in 1897. After the Second World War, Bernheim encouraged the development of Europe by introducing awards in order to honour original studies on this theme. The Bernheim Foundation, established after his death, also strives to develop the European spirit among university students. The trainees, who are selected by a jury, are given the opportunity to deepen their knowledge and interest with regard to the European issues in the form of a paid traineeship from the Bernheim Foundation. Each trainee is spending 5 months at the Directorate-general Coordination and European Affairs and another 5 months at the Permanent Representation of Belgium to the European Union. 

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College of Europe

Established on 19 May 1950 in Bruges, the College of Europe is an independent institution with the status of a public utility establishment. Based on the conclusions of the 1948 Hague Congress, the College’s mission is to provide bilingual (French and English) education to postgraduate students, organise research activities, scientific colloquiums, training seminars and other activities aiming to further European integration. Attendance is open to university graduates from over 45 countries.

The curriculum revolves around four European studies departments: Political and Administrative Studies, Economic Studies, Legal Studies, and International Relations and Diplomacy Studies.

One campus is located in Bruges while the other one in Natolin (Warsaw) was opened in 1994 in the wake of the changes in Central and Eastern Europe following the fall of Communism.

The College’s governing bodies are the Administrative Council, the Executive Committee, the Rector and the Academic Council. The Administrative Council includes representatives of the countries hosting the campuses in Bruges and Natolin and of the other European governments. It is responsible for attaining the College’s objectives. The Executive Committee, which exercises the responsibilities delegated by the Administrative Council, is in charge of the administrative and financial management of the College. Lastly, the Academic Council ensures the maintenance of high-level teaching and training programmes.

Funding for the College takes the form of subsidies received from the European Commission and EU Member States, particularly Belgium. The scholarships granted by these Member States for their students attending the College of Europe make up another source of income. The College acts as the selection committee for Belgium.

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