Science can help Europe to find answers to its various socioeconomic and environmental challenges. However, European science is only as good as European scientists. Since 1996, the EU's Marie Curie Actions have helped over 50 000 researchers to gain experience through training and mobility, develop their careers, and undertake groundbreaking research. To mark Marie Curie's 15th anniversary, in 2011 the then Polish EU Presidency organised a high-profile symposium in Warsaw, the birthplace of Marie Skłodowska-Curie. Financed by the EU and Polish Ministry for Science and Higher Education, the Marie Curie Researchers' Symposium "Science - Passion, Mission, Responsibilities" (SCIENCE-PAMIR) project-organised event drew nearly 350 participants, including 273 Marie Curie fellows representing 46 countries in all the action areas covered. Under the banner of "Science - Passion, Mission, Responsibilities", the symposium enabled Marie Curie fellows to discuss their work and the impact of Marie Curie Actions on their careers. In addition, participants explored ways to improve networking and collaboration between fellows. They also shared their experiences in raising public awareness. The symposium helped to develop a feeling of community and common purpose between current and former Marie Curie fellows. It also raised the profile of this pan-European mobility programme and helped to raise public awareness of the importance of science and the role of scientists.