International Summer School Seggauberg 2007
European Cultures: The Challenges of Diversity and Unity
The 8th COMECE Summer School will take place from June 30th to July 14th, 2007. Since 2006 the Summer School is a joint activity of COMECE with the Karl-Franzens University of Graz and the diocese of Graz-Segau. Eighty students from thirty countries will participate. They will follow lectures and seminars organized at Seggau Castle, near Graz.
Dr. Egon Kapellari, the Bishop of Graz-Seckau and delegate of the Austrian Bishops’ Conference in COMECE, stressed during the presentation of the programme that for him the ‘engagement of the Church for a peaceful Europe’ is central. He also asserted that Seggau is an ‘ideal choice for the location of the Summer School in a southeast European setting’. Many young people identify with this location with enthusiasm – as was the case during the Summer School 2006.
Referring to the programme for this year’s Summer School, Manfred Prisching, Professor of Sociology at the University in Graz, who will hold the introductory lecture for this year’s Summer School, said that Europe’s diversity is its weakness and strength at the same time: ‘Its Strength, because European dynamism and innovation are rooted in cultural diversity, concentrated on a quite small territory. However it is also Europe’s weakness, because it is difficult to create a peaceful society out of so many different peoples and groups’. A harmonious Europe, he said, will never be the result of a quasi evolutionary process; indeed it is an ‘historical improbability’. A United Europe is not simply ‘a product, which History can produce without paying a price’; it is a complex model, which will be developed only by sustained effort and engagement.
The Summer School, that will last for a fortnight, offers two series of lectures and six different seminars for the students who come from different faculties. Successful participants can add points on basis of the results achieved at their home-university via the ECT-system. The academic programme will be complemented by cultural activities.
  ECTS : European Credit Transfer System