Want to study in Italy? Visa applications are now open; Uni-Italia Director explains

Not many students are aware of the fact that in India they have the possibility to avail the support of Uni-Italia, an official hub for study in Italy located inside the premises of the Consulate General of Italy in Mumbai.

Federica Maria GioveUpdated: Monday, June 13, 2022, 02:29 PM IST
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Thousands of Indian students every year decide to complete their higher education overseas. 3500+ Indian students obtained their visas last year and flew to Italy for their higher studies. At the same time, the rejection rate was still quite high, and many students found their visa applications rejected because of a lack of essential documents or lack of basic key information.

In fact, applying for education abroad might not always be easy. Every educational system has its own admission criteria and rules, which may differ a lot from the Indian ones. The vast amount of information available on the internet often tends to be confusing as various unofficial websites are at odds with each other.

Moreover, the numerous student WhatsApp groups and social media pages where fake news is often being circulated, end up further misleading the students in terms of the documents required, deadlines for application, and so on.

In recent years the Indian education market has grown saturated with consultants, overseas and recruiting agents, too often lacking both in quality and integrity, promising the students free education abroad, university admission, and a visa to Europe, in exchange of a considerable amount of money.

This phenomenon has saddened in recent years, with numerous Consultancies that used to work in the tourism industry transforming into Study Abroad Agencies, with no knowledge of the various programmes available in Italy or application procedures, both in terms of admission and visa application procedures for students.

Indian students aspiring to pursue their further education abroad are seen falling into this trap and are lured into paying really expensive fees. The outcome, in the majority of cases, is a rejected visa application, a huge amount of money lost behind consultancies, a precious year of the student's educational career lost and an overall unjustified distrust towards the foreign government institutions.

Federica Maria Giove

As a result, the first important factor for students planning to pursue their education abroad is to rely solely on credible sources of information. In Italy, we currently have around 250 Italian Higher Education Institutions recognized by the Italian Ministry of Education, both public and private, offering programs entirely taught in English in numerous disciplines, from STEM to Humanities. All these programs have different admission requirements and different timelines to apply. The selection criteria are all available on the Universities' websites.

For those students already in possession of a letter of admission for a degree program in Italy, the next mandatory step to follow is to apply online for pre-enrolment on the official University website universitaly.it, collect all the documents listed in the official Visa Checklist, and then apply for their Study visa.

Students applying for a course in Italy with a duration of fewer than 3 months, will have to apply for a Short Term Visa (C type). Students applying to public or private colleges for a Bachelor's degree, Master's degree, or Ph.D. programme will need to apply for a National Long Term Visa (D type).

In India, there are currently three Italian Diplomatic missions issuing Visas to Italy: the Embassy of Italy in New Delhi, the Consulate General of Italy in Mumbai, and the Consulate General of Italy in Kolkata. Once the Diplomatic mission of reference is identified in accordance with the residency of the applicant, students will need to search and download the respective Visa checklist available only on the Embassy/Consulate websites or VFS website.

On the Visa checklist, students will easily find the complete list of documents required for their visa application, such as their ID, proof of academic eligibility for the course chosen, acceptance letter from the destination Italian HEI, health insurance, proof of accommodation, return flight ticket, as well as adequate proof of financial needs. Students must prove that they themselves or their sponsors will be able to support them financially while studying.

Students might also have to undergo a mandatory interview, as a way to know them better and understand their inspirations, desires, and motivations for going to Italy. Applications will need to be submitted through the concerned VFS Centers to the Embassy or Consulate of reference. Once the visa is issued, the student’s passport will be sent back to them directly by VFS.

We receive many queries regarding the expected rejection rate this year and reasons for rejections of study visas. There is of course no standard answer to this question. All applications are different and all cases are unique. However, as pointed out earlier, all genuine students fulfilling the requirements listed in the official visa checklist, shouldn’t have concerns about applying for a visa. The only thing to make sure of is to be aware of the process and requirements, avoid last-minute applications and be wary of unreliable intermediates.

Not many students are aware of the fact that in India they have the possibility to avail the support of Uni-Italia, an official hub for study in Italy located inside the premises of the Consulate General of Italy in Mumbai.

Founded by the Italian Ministries of External Affairs and International Cooperation, Education, and Internal Affairs, Uni-Italia has launched its activities in India In 2017 and has ever since assisted Indian students all across India pursuing their education in an Italian Higher Education Institution, obtaining the right information on requirements and procedures related to the university admission, pre-enrolment, and Study visa application, as well as all guidance related to their post-arrival in Italy.

Students willing to gain assistance in the process may avail the guidance of Uni-Italia officers who, thanks to the know-how achieved from the association with Italian Higher Education Institutions and the Italian Diplomatic Missions in their Home Country, will work as a bridge, accompanying them through the entire Study in Italy process and making sure to avoid last-minute confusions and incomplete applications.


Federica Maria Giove, the Director of the Uni-Italia Centre in India

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