In Athens on the first of November 2017, an event was organised to mark the international accreditation of the Diploma of the Department of Chemical Engineering of University of Patras, as an Integrated Master of Engineering (MEng) to the level 7 of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF). This is the first time that a Greek Higher Education Department is accredited by an independent international organisation (in this case the Institution of Chemical Engineers (IChemE) of UK). The level 7 of EQF according to the Bologna process, covers both the first (undergraduate) and second (postgraduate) course cycles.
The event was held at the ‘Leonidas Zervas’ amphitheatre of the National Research Foundation and was attended by the Alternate Minister of Research and Innovation Prof. Costas Fotakis, the former Minister of Education Anna Diamantopoulou, the former Deputy Minister of Education Athanasia Anagnostopoulou, the Head of the education section of the ‘New Democracy’ party, Niki Kerameos, the Head of the Higher Education section of the ‘Potami’ party, George Mavrotas, the member of the parliament of the ‘Syriza’ party, Dimitris Rizos and the chairman of the Hellenic Quality Assurance & Accreditation Agency (HQA), Prof. Nicoletta Paisidou.
Professor Venetziana Kyriazopoulou, Rector of the University of Patras, opened up the ceremony followed by the Vice Rector of Academic Affairs Professor, Nikolaos Karamanos, who referred to the pioneering quality assurance policy of University of Patras and the progress that the university has made in all recent international rankings.
The keynote lecture of the event was delivered by Professor Dimitrios Mataras, Head of the Department of Chemical Engineering, who presented the multi-level accreditation process, stressing the pioneering character of this exercise for Greece and the advantages it offers to the Department and its students and graduates.
The event was continued with interventions by the Alternate Minister of Education, the former ministers and party representatives.
Professor Fotakis congratulated the Department and referred extensively to the importance of this achievement, highlighting its relevance to the research achievements of the department of Chemical Engineering and its close cooperation with the Institute of Chemical Engineering Sciences (ICE-HT / FORTH) in Patras.
Mrs. Diamantopoulou stressed the importance of this initiative, given the limited state funding of recent years, emphasizing its compliance with developments in the European Higher Education arena. She also expressed her wish for the qualification process to advance to all aspects of educational activity in combination with the establishment of national qualifications framework.
Mrs. Anagnostopoulou expressed her enthusiasm for the success of a Department located in her hometown and underlined that this development shows clearly the huge potential of higher education in Greece.
Mrs. Kerameos complimented the Department and the University of Patras for their initiatives, expressing the hope that more academic establishments will pursue the same path soon.
Mr. Mavrotas, Professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering of the National Technical University of Athens, congratulated the colleagues and students from Patras for their openness and for their success in their long-term endeavours.