Poland is a member of the European Union. It joined the Schengen Area in 2007. As a result passport checks are abolished on Poland’s borders to Germany, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Lithuania. It practically means that persons admitted to the Schengen Area can travel hassle-free between the countries of the Schengen Area without internal land and sea border controls, from Portugal to Poland and from Greece to Finland.
Thanks to its location, Poland occupies a special place in the European Union. Poland’s border on the river Bug became the EU’s eastern border. In the wider geographical and geopolitical sense Poland occupies a central position. More and more foreign investment from Western Europe is to be shifted to Poland, as well as from the US and Asia. Poland’s geographic location facilitates the logistics activities and forecasts indicate an increase in the number of immigrants to the country.
Polish institutions of higher education participate in international student exchange programmes and engage in bilateral agreements and individual exchange programmes pursued by particular schools. All these initiatives enhance the development of relations between Polish and foreign institutions of higher education. The number of Polish institutions of higher education awarded an Erasmus University Charter approach 200 and the mobility of Polish students grows rapidly.
Poland’s education market has been the most dynamically developing one in Europe during the last twelve years. The number of higher education institutions has increased five fold while the number of students quadrupled. Each year almost half a million young people begin their education at universities and colleges.
Polish academic traditions reach back to 14th century, some of the Europe’s oldest universities can be found here. The Jagiellonian University of Cracow was established in 1364. Nicholas Copernicus and Marie Skłodowska-Curie are among great names of Polish scientists known and admired worldwide.
Polish universities offer high quality studies and are an integral part of the European education space. All leading universities offer programmes thought in English, these include medicine, engineering, humanities, business and finance. Poland takes active part in the Bolonia Process. Thanks to the ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) students can be fully mobile, and continue education in other countries.
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Poland in short
– Official name: Republic of Poland /Rzeczpospolita Polska (short form: Poland/ Polska)
– Government type: republic
– Location: Central Europe
– Border countries: Belarus 416 km, Czech Republic 790 km, Germany 467 km, Lithuania 103 km, Russia (Kaliningrad Oblast) 210 km, Slovakia 541 km, Ukraine 529 km
– Language: Polish
– Capital city: Warsaw
– Major cities: Gdańsk, Kraków, Łódź, Poznań, Wrocław
– Population: around 38 mln inhabitants
– Total area: 312 685 sq km (304 465 sq m – land, 8220 sq m – water)
– Climate: temperate with cold, cloudy, moderately severe winters with frequent precipitation; mild summers with frequent showers and thundershowers
– Local time: GMT + 1 hr
– Member of the European Union: Since 2004
– Religions: Roman Catholic 89,8%, Eastern Orthodox 1,3%, Protestant 0,3%, other 0,3%, unspecified 8,3%
– Monetary unit: zloty (PLN)
– Actual exchange rates: www.nbp.pl