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25th Anniversary
Erasmus Competition 2008 Photographs
The Erasmus Prize 2008
Erasmus Stars

UK Erasmus Student Prize 2008 National Winners Announced

From Lapland to the Ile de Reunion in the Indian Ocean, over 200 students shared their fascinating stories and photographs in the recent Erasmus Prize Competition.

Patrick Cassidy from Queen’s University, Belfast, was named as the UK Erasmus Student Prize (Essay) winner, and Alistair Howarth from the University of Manchester, the Erasmus Student Prize (Photography) winner, for 2008. Eight short-listed finalists recounted and illustrated their experiences of living and studying in Europe with the Erasmus Programme to an invited audience at the Prize Event in London on Tuesday 9 December 2008.

The 2008 Prize event was the second stage of a national competition. Students submitted an essay or photography portfolio on the theme ‘Home or Away?’ describing and portraying the academic and personal benefits of their work and study abroad under the Erasmus Programme.

Both national winners won £500 and the regional winners all won £250. Eight runners-up were awarded gift vouchers. A panel of five judges selected the winners from an excellent group of finalists.

A new category for this year’s competition was best promotion of the Erasmus programme by a participating Higher Education Institution. The Robert Gordon University took first place for their innovative and high-profile web-based tool – the Erasmus Module. A close second place was awarded to Sheffield University for their International Exchange Event.

This was the seventh annual UK Erasmus Student Prize Ceremony. David Hibler, Contract Manager for the Erasmus programme at the British Council said;

“Erasmus is an excellent opportunity for UK students and the competition gives us all the chance to have a glimpse of the life-changing experiences that our ‘Erasmus Stars’ enjoy. Their essays and photographs provide an insight into the benefits of the programme and its impact on the lives of those who take part. As well as becoming more confident, self-reliant and better-prepared for their future careers, Erasmus students gain an international perspective that the classroom alone cannot offer. We hope their stories and images will encourage future students to experience Erasmus for themselves.”

To view photos of the event please click here

Essay Category

Regional Winners and Runners-up

Regional Winner (Northern Ireland) and overall Winner : Patrick Cassidy, Queen's University, Belfast

Regional Runner-up for Northern Ireland:Sarah Cummings, Stranmillis University College, Belfast

Regional Winner for England: Emma Kelly, University College London

Regional Runner-up for England: Annah Herbert-Graham, University of Sussex

Regional Winner for Wales: Ruth Hancox, University of Wales, Bangor

Regional Runner-up for Wales: David Millen, Swansea University

Regional Winner for Scotland: Ailsa Ross, Edinburgh University

Regional Runner-up for Scotland: AimeeLinekar, University of St Andrews

Photography Category

Regional Winners and Runners-up

Regional Winner (England) and overall winner: Alistair Howarth, University of  Manchester

Regional Runner-up for England: Annah Herbert-Graham, University of Sussex

Regional Winner for Wales: Ross Clarke, Swansea University

Regional Runner-up for Wales: RuthHancox, University of Wales, Bangor

Regional Winner for Northern Ireland: Laura Michael, Queen's University, Belfast

Regional Runner-up for Northern Ireland: JulieCrawford, Queen's University, Belfast

Regional Winner for Scotland: Benjamin Cooper, The Robert Gordon University

Runner-up for Scotland: Daniel McInally, Glasgow Caledonian University

All regional winners gave a 5 minute presentation on their entry at the Award Ceremony which took place at Glaziers Hall in London on December 9th. It was a great opportunity to meet and exchange thoughts and ideas over a light buffet lunch, hear presentations from our winners and celebrate the accomplishments of another year of successful Erasmus students. Sarah Lambert, Head of Representation, responsible for representing the European Commission, gave a key note speech.

"I entered the Erasmus Photo Competition with the hope of showing just how much fun my year abroad was and what diverse and exciting challenges you are faced with when living in another country. It was such an honour to be chosen as the Wales regional finalist for the competition and then knowing that I had the opportunity to share just a glimpse of the wonderful experience I had in Gran Canaria with an audience and other Erasmus Students was incredible. I can honestly say that my time abroad was the most exhilarating and rewarding year of my life. The British Council and Swansea University do a fantastic job in arranging these placement years and I owe a great deal of thanks to them for allowing me such an opportunity and one that I will never forget." Ross Clarke, Wales Regional Finalist.

The Competition Details


The competition was open to all Erasmus students who carried out either a study or work placement during 2007/08. Essay and photo competition details and entry forms are posted below. All participants had to submit their essays or photographs by 20 October. Please check the full terms and conditions of this competition as stated in the essay and photographic details below .

This year we had one regional winner and runner up from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, from which one overall nationwide winner was selected in each category.


The nationwide First Prize in both categories was £500

The regional First Prizes in both categories was£250

The runners-up each received gift vouchers to the value of £75

Entry Forms and Competition Details

Essay Entry Form

Essay Competition details and rules

Erasmus Competition Questionnaire

Photographic Entry Form

Photographic Competition details and rules


A new element to the competition this year was the Promotion Prize. This category was open to all participating institutions that sent out Erasmus students in 2007/08. The category was based on a promotional activity carried out to raise awareness and interest in Erasmus. Institutions were asked to provide a rationale for their promotion, together with details on the objectives, the target audience, the results and reasons for its success.  


First prize was £500

Runner-up was £250

Entry forms and competition details

Institution Entry Form

Institution promotion competition details and rules

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