A FLAS Fellow's Semester Abroad in Amman

Audrey Dombro, an agricultural and consumer economics student and 2019-20 FLAS fellow, reflects upon her experience studying in Jordan.

Master of Arts in European Union Studies

The European Union Center at the University of Illinois offers the only Master of Arts in European Union Studies (MAEUS) program in the Western Hemisphere. Learn more here.

Reading Contagion through Boccaccio's Decameron

Dr. Eleonora Stoppino discusses the moments of social and ethical breakdown described by Boccaccio, as well as the potential for reconstruction after the plague.

Conversations on Europe

Watch the collection of online roundtable discussions on different EU issues sponsored by the University of Pittsburgh.

COVID-19 and Liberal Democracy in Hungary

Dr. Zsuzsa Gille responds to the "Enabling Act," passed by the Hungarian Parliament on March 30, 2020.

Videos of Previous Lectures

Missed an EUC-hosted lecture? Our blog's video tag has archived previous EUC-sponsored lectures.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Italy and its Role in International Relations in Europe and the Mediterranean

Image courtesy of Consulate General of Italy in Chicago
On February 16, 2016, a lecture sponsored by the Department of French and Italian  and co-sponsored by the European Union Center was held regarding Italy and International Relations.  The lecture featured Marco Graziosi, Vice Consul of Italy in Chicago and Prof. Federiga Bindi-Visiting Scholar, John Hopkins University.  The author of this article is Carlo Di-Giulio, a graduate assistant at the EUC.  In this article, he relates his experience of listening to Professor Federiga Bindi. 

Professor Federiga Bindi comes from many years of working closely with ministers and diplomats and taking part in decisive moments of Italian politics in the international arena. This long and solid experience is clearly visible when she talks to the audience, and when she sometimes calls by first name the same ministers and diplomats that have had key roles in the last 15 years of Italian foreign relations.

Professor Bindi accurately described the role of Italy and its aspirations to be a big country – in the claims of some politicians – as a mistake. Describing Italian contemporary history and its evolution since WWII, she highlighted how being among the founders of the European project since the very beginning fostered some illusions that Italy could have played as a big (with all the risks involved) country although being a middle-size country.

She gave an overview of the relations with the US and the importance and meaning that these have, all accompanied with personal anecdotes. The narration of the debates on critical decisions before the recent Libyan conflict captured the audience and suggested an alternative perspective on negotiation's table in international politics.

A special mention to the relations with Russia and Turkey by looking at the Syrian refugee crisis and future relations with Egypt – especially within light of the recent Regeni murder, a young researcher brutally tortured and killed in Cairo last January – closed a highly positive appraisal of the Italian Ambassador in Cairo and full trust in his abilities to manage and solve the tensions created by the case.

Professor Bindi’s speech was engaging, and a truthful picture of what discussion tables look like. Her insights on negotiations and genuine analyses of diplomatic dynamics behind the scenes have made her speech a “must attend” for all those interested in international relations, especially those with a special focus on Italian foreign policy.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Videoconference: "Whose Legacy? Museums and National Heritage Debates”

By Raphaela Berding

On Tuesday, February 16 the EUC co-sponsored the Dialogue on Europe Videoconference organized by the European Studies Center at the University of Pittsburgh.

The most recent videoconference organized by the European Studies Center at the University of Pittsburgh had a theme related "Whose Legacy? Museums and National Heritage Debates” and the expert panel discussed the ethical and legal questions museums in the Europe and North America face in the on-going debates over art repatriation, conservation, and national vs. universal heritage.

The EU Center is proud that the University of Illinois contributed significantly to the fruitful discussion. Susan Frankenberg was part of the panel of experts hat kept the discussion alive. Frankenberg worked as curator of Archaeology at the University of Tennessee for 11 years before coming to Illinois, and works at the University of Illinois as the Program Coordinator of Museum Studies at the Department of Anthropology since 2007.

The list of panelists, according to the official University of Pittsburgh YouTube account, included:
Dr. Erin Peters, Joint Lecturer in Curatorial Studies in History of Art and Architecture at the University of Pittsburgh and Assistant Curator in the Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh; Dr. Neil Brodie, author of Trafficking Culture and writer of the blog www.marketmassdestruction.com; Dr. Susan R. Frankenberg, Program Coordinator, Museum Studies of Anthropology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Dr. Sophie Vigneron, Senior Lecturer, Kent Law School, University of Kent (invited)

The next videoconference will be held on March 22. Its theme will be “Greece and the EU: A Way Forward?” The EU Center is looking forward to another exciting discussion!

You can watch the videoconference below, or you can watch it on YouTube.


Wednesday, February 17, 2016

EUC Dimensions of New and Heritage Language Education in Multicultural Sweden with Dr. Liv Thorstensson Dávila

On February 5th, as a part of the EUC Faculty Lecture Series, Dr. Liv Thorstensson Dávila discussed and drew on qualitative research conducted at a linguistically and culturally diverse elementary school in Sweden, highlighting the complexities of new and heritage language teaching and learning within the school, community, and regional context. This article was written by Paula Jaime Agramon, a graduate assistant at the European Union Center.  

Professor Liv Dávila from the Department of Curriculum and & Instruction from the College of Education performed research on the dimensions of new and heritage language education in multicultural Sweden. She has spent time in Sweden living in highly populated immigrant communities and performing research in schools in these communities, and her findings are quite interesting.

Knowing that Sweden has a high rate of immigration and that with the current refugee crisis, a quantifiable amount of them are seeking refugee status in Sweden, it is interesting to study how well the youth is integrating into Swedish society. Professor Dávila  studied how the vast majority of these kids go to schools were they attend ‘special’ classes where they learn Swedish as a second language.

They also learn “Heritage languages” which in most cases are the languages their family members speak. They learn those languages because according to “The Language Swedish Act” it is their right to learn their mother tongue so they can communicate with their families in that language as well as with family members and friends back in their families’ home countries.

Even though the current situation for these youth immigrants is not the brightest, Professor Dávila  is positive in that as time goes on and these refugees adapt to their new country, Swedish people will be more welcoming and refugees will better integrate themselves into the Swedish culture and lifestyle.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Master of Arts in European Union Studies at the University of Illinois

The European Union Center at the University of Illinois offers the only Master of Arts in European Union Studies (MAEUS) program in the Western Hemisphere. Five full-time staff members support small cohorts of students with academic and professional guidance, funding opportunities through FLAS fellowships and assistantships, and the connecting of students with UI's world-class faculty and weekly visiting officials and scholars on campus.

MAEUS alumni have a 100% employment rate within 6 months of graduation and are frequently hired for jobs in business, government, higher education, and non-profits.

Why choose the MAEUS program?

  • Studies draw from a wide range of disciplines
  • Students can pursue joint degrees with professional schools
  • Students have the opportunity to study the EU firsthand through exclusive and preferred access to internships with organizations such as the Illinois Trade Commission, European Parliament liaison office, US State Department, and more
  • The program offers study abroad opportunities with institutions throughout the EU
  • Funding opportunities include FLAS fellowships and EUC graduate assistantships, as well as funding from other academic departments on campus

For student testimonials about their experience with our program, please click here.

Flexible Degree Options

Students have a number of different options to complete their MAEUS degree. These include the traditional two-year degree option and a five-year program leading to a Bachelor of Arts degree in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and a Master of Arts degree in EU Studies.

Five Year BA/MA Program

Students enrolled at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign have the opportunity to complete a MAEUS degree on an accelerated time-table through our five year BA/MA program. At the moment, this program is only available to undergraduate students who have majors in the following departments: Political Science, Global Studies, French and Italian, Germanic Languages and Literatures, Spanish and Portuguese, and Slavic Languages and Literatures. For more information, please click this link for more information.

Why a 5 Year BA/MA?

By beginning the MAEUS degree as undergraduate students, those enrolled in the five year program will receive their MA with one additional year of education instead of the traditional two. Other benefits include broadened opportunities for advanced language and international learning, as well as study abroad opportunities during undergraduate and graduate degrees.


  • Those interested in the two year degree can find information about the application process here.
  • Those interested in five year BA/MA program should email vanderm1@illinois.edu to schedule a meeting.


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