Provide young people from all social backgrounds access to education and training: This was one of the central concerns in the life of the entrepreneur Heinrich Mylius (1769-1854). He dedicated himself to this leitmotif with great personal and financial commitment.
Mylius owes his business success not least to his innovative ideas in the silk industry. He was particularly keen to pass on his know-how, starting with an improvement of the manual processes, then a technical, patented conversion of the machinery, and finally the use of the latest chemical processes. His commitment culminated in the foundation of a school institution, which was equally dedicated to the teaching of theory and practice - in 1841 the SIAM (Società d'Incoraggiamento d'Arti e Mestieri), was born in Milan, an institution which can be seen as a precursor of today's system of dual education.
With the project "EuropeLab: Applied Knowledge", Villa Vigoni wants to bring this idea of its "founding father" into the present and revive it.
In a ceremony held in May 2016 at Villa Vigoni, the then Education Ministers of Germany and Italy, Johanna Wanka and Stefania Giannini, drew attention to the great importance of vocational education and training, and extended the "Memorandum of Understanding in Vocational Education and Training", which at the time had already united Italy and the Federal Republic of Germany for three years. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Italian Ministry of Education, Universities and Research (MIUR) agreed on fields of action in vocational training cooperation. These included the development and testing of dual training models which are to be made tangible through concrete German-Italian encounters.
The three-part Villa Vigoni project "EuropeLab: Applied Knowledge" is dedicated to these current (education) policy objectives of Germany and Italy in the EU context. In the form of two subject-specific workshops, German and Italian trainees will be given the opportunity to learn and work together in a school and company training context. In addition, there will be an educational discussion with proven experts and actors from education, politics and business, in which the application, adaptation and further development of the dual system will be discussed from a German-Italian perspective.