History and Mission

University of Illinois seal

The University of Illinois European Union Center (EUC) was established in 1998 with support from the European Commission, as one of the ten original EU Centers in the United States. In 2003, the US Department of Education designated the EUC as a Title VI National Resource Center. In 2011-15, the European Union recognized the EUC as a European Union Center of Excellence, and in 2015-18 as a Jean Monnet Center of Excellence.

Founded in 1998, the European Union Center serves as the focal point for teaching, research, and outreach on Europe and the European Union at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Our sponsored projects, affiliated faculty, academic programs, and outreach and public engagement activities foreground interdisciplinary, inclusive, and international perspectives on issues impacting Europe as a geographic and cultural area in space over time. The EU Center plays a particularly important role on campus in the promotion of language study and public engagement with the significance of transatlantic relations in U.S. foreign policy. The EUC is privileged to work with Center-affiliated faculty of the University of Illinois, who bring us into dialogue with partners from around the U.S. and world thanks to their international reputations as experts in their fields. 

The EUC Mission

  • To promote scholarly research on the EU and transatlantic relations by serving as a national resource center
  • To strengthen undergraduate, graduate, and professional curricula on the EU across all colleges at the University of Illinois
  • To educate and train a new generation of experts on EU policies and EU-US relations
  • To deepen the understanding between the peoples of the US and the EU through an extensive outreach program to K-12 educators and students, businesses, government leaders, the media, and the general public.

The European Union Center is a Jean Monnet Center of Excellence and is a part of the Illinois Global Institute. The European Union Center's programs are funded in part by US Department of Education Title VI grants.