Poland is a country in Central Europe bordered by Lithuania, Baltic Sea and Kaliningrad Oblast to the north, Slovakia and Czech Republic to the south, Belarus and Ukraine to the east and Germany to the west. Its total land surface area is 3,12,679 square kilometers.
Poland is a liberal and is one of the high income-generating post-Communist countries in the world. It has a strong domestic market and flexible currency. In addition to this, Poland is financially stable as it doesn’t rely on exports.
The topography is mostly flat although there are mountains (Sudetes, Tatras, Beskids) along Poland’s southern border. The climate is mainly temperate throughout Poland. While the climate is oceanic in the north and west, it is warm and continental in the south and west.
Poland has a human population of 38.5 million. It is home to various ethnic groups like Germans, Greeks, Russians, Armenians, Vietnamese, Silesians, Ukrainians, Slovaks and Lemkos among others. Poland is a religiously diverse society where Christianity and Judaism are the most prevalent.
After having survived centuries of conflict, Poland has emerged to be an economically stable country in the world. In addition to this, it is culturally rich and a custodian of magnificent locales, and majestic architectural sites.
Warsaw Old Market Place, Bialowieza Forest, Malbork Castle, Slowinski Sand Dunes, and Wawel Castle are some of the most beautiful sights that one gets to see in this country. Whether it is exploring the nation’s vibrant cities, or visiting the lakes and forests of this picturesque countryside, living in Poland is an experience in itself.
Polish people are mostly reserved and prefer to keep to themselves. They are also very religious and enjoy a modest way of living. Polish people love theatre and enjoy attending a play, movie, ballet or concert.
Poland is also a student hub with its first university being established in the 14th century. Every year, it welcomes a considerable number of international students from all around the world, especially Ukraine, Belarus, Spain, India, and Sweden. One of the best things about studying in Poland is that the cost of living is relatively low.
Poland welcomes a total population of 29,000 international students from over 140 countries. It offers more than 400 courses in English, many of which are also at an undergraduate level.
Today, Poland’s medical colleges are gaining attention for offering high-quality programs that are cost effective. Like other EU countries, Poland also offers low or free tuition fee to students from EU.
Most popular universities of Poland are University of Warsaw, Jagiellonian University, Warsaw University of Technology, University of Łódź, and Nicolaus Copernicus University. An undergraduate course in Poland lasts three years whereas a postgraduate programs is between 1.5 to 2 years.
International students must successfully complete the previous levels of studies. Fluency in English is also necessary. The admission process differs from one university to another. If an international student wishes to study in Polish, then he or she must submit a proof of proficiency in the language or take up a year-long language course to learn this language.
International students pay a tuition fee that’s in the range of Rs. 1.5 lakhs to Rs. 2.5 lakhs; depending on the course and discipline. Scholarships to study in Poland are limited in number and one has to take care of his or her own costs.
Polish law requires that all non-EU, non-EFTA citizens who wish to study in Poland must get a student visa from the Polish Consulate nearest to them in the home country. (Your country's consulates in Poland are unlikely to know much more than you do about Polish visas.)
Persons wishing to study in Poland may apply for the national long-stay visas (D). Please note that this kind of visa entitles the holder to travel through the Schengen area for up to 3 months.
Entrance visas issued by the Polish consulate in your home country should be valid for one year. The visa should be free of charge, although the various consulates have a lot of autonomy in requiring you to pay additional fees for processing. Make sure that you request a multiple-entry visa.
The visa permits continuous residence on the territory of the Republic of Poland or multiple consecutive periods of residence, not exceeding jointly, in the case of a long-term visa – a year within the period of visa validity. You are not usually legally allowed to work in Poland on a student visa during the regular academic year (see 3.1 below). In order to get a student visa, you must have:
1. a valid passport (the passport validity must exceed the required date of departure from Poland by at least 3 months) with at least one blank visa page
2. one colour 4.5 cm. x 3.5 cm. photograph which shows your left ear (not a profile, but a slight turn of the head)
3. a letter of invitation addressed to the consulate from the Jagiellonian University (the letter addressed to the consulate is provided by the CES administration office)
4. proof that you have the financial means to travel to and from Poland and maintain yourself while you are there without working. (Usually a printout of your bank statement showing that you have some money is sufficient. If you will be receiving grants or loans, those are good things to show as well. The most recent official recommendation is that you should be able to show that you can be expected to cover at least Zl. 800 per month.)
5. A filled-in application form. (available from the Polish Consulate as well as online)
Please note that individual Consulates might have more specific rules about the documentation for the visa: Consulates have the right to request additional documentation where it is deemed necessary. For example, students have been asked for:
● Proof that the student has paid the application registration fee or even a portion of the tuition fee for their programme. (even if the Jagiellonian University deadline is still in the future)
● Medical coverage – either medical insurance or proof that you have sufficient financial means to purchase medical insurance. All visitors from outside of the EU to the Schengen area countries should have basic health and accident insurance that will cover up to 30,000 euros. Students may be asked to show insurance coverage for the first few months of their stay and / or a statement that the student intends to get Polish insurance upon matriculating as a student.
● The address of the student residence where the student will be living
Most Consulates can issue a visa within 7 to 10 working days of the application and most offer an express service (one or two days) for an additional fee.
Modern-day Poland is actually a fun country for students and offers a plethora of activities such as sightseeing, visiting museums and art galleries, shopping, attending ballet and theatre, etc.
The best thing is that everything in this country is relatively cheap and so one can easily enjoy living in Poland without having to worry much about the country. Polish people, though reserved, are helpful and friendly which is instrumental in settling down.
The cost of living in Poland is among the lowest in the entire EU. Typical expenses are as follows:
1. Rent / Shared apartment: Rs. 2,40,000 to 3,20,000 per annum
2. Food & groceries: Rs. 1,20,000 per annum
3. Phone & internet: Rs. 12,000 per annum
4. Electricity and heating: Rs. 1,28,000 per annum
5. Public transport: Rs. 25,000 per annum
6. Entertainment: Rs. 4,500 per annum
(The expenses vary from one person to another)