Written by Elizabeth Koprowski

The launch of the Erasmus+ program in 2014 marked the beginning of a series of initiatives from the world-renowned student-mobility program aimed at increasing international study and supporting student research and endeavors around the world. The new program was a major success, and in October 2015, we reported that the program would increase mobility grant funding by €15 million in the following year. Now the Erasmus+ program aims to boost graduate student mobility in France with a €30 million loan program backed by European Investment Fund (EIF), the French BPCE bank, and the Erasmus+ program.

The program will grant graduate students access to loans of €12,000-18,000 (for 1- and 2-year Master's studies respectively). The loans, which will not require collateral backing, will come with attractive and competitive interest rates and flexible payment plans. Erasmus+ will offer the loans to French students pursuing Master's studies in participating Erasmus+ countries and to students from Erasmus+ countries who choose to study in France.

The French program is the second in Erasmus+'s Master Loan Scheme, which will work to support 200,000 students in the next four years. The Scheme is backed by a €500 million guarantee from the European Union. The program was adopted by the Spanish MicroBank earlier in 2015, and Erasmus+ hope that these student loans will give students access to international graduate study, regardless of their socioeconomic background. It also aims to support students in underfunded areas of study.

Elizabeth Koprowski is an American writer and travel historian. She has worked in the higher education system with international students both in Europe and in the USA.
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