The French Embassy in New Delhi has organised pre-departure sessions for Indian students heading to France for higher studies. The event, Bienvenue en France, is taking place in 13 cities across India from 27 June to 2 August.

The event features interactive and instructive sessions, answering frequently asked questions, such as, visa application procedure, accommodation, practical advice about daily life in France, cultural life and on the various avenues to learn French. It also provides useful information about administrative procedures to be completed in France, the teaching methods used in French educational institutions and various inter-cultural aspects.

France ranks third in terms of receiving the highest number of international students, right after the US and the UK. Indian students have been increasingly opting for France for their higher studies and France has been making active efforts to welcome them in its world- class institutions.

During his visit to India in March, French President Emmanuel Macron encouraged Indian students to choose France as destination to pursue higher studies. In 2017, 5,300 Indian students opted for higher education in France. By the year 2020, France aims to welcome 10,000 Indian students to Europe’s most innovative country.

The French higher education system, long recognised for its quality, is among the top three most popular destinations in the world among international students. With its famous “Grandes Ecoles” and reputed universities, its renowned management and business schools, France is said to be at the educational heart of Europe.

The number of Indian students going to France has been sharply increasing over the recent years. Most of these students attend the over 1,300 courses taught in English in France, a number that is increasing every year. In 2016, following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to France, both countries agreed to allow Indian students to stay in France for two years (known as APS), one for the period of studies and one after completion of their course for acquiring professional experience, with a reciprocal arrangement for French students in India.

Last year, the French Embassy in New Delhi offered 500 scholarships, including under its flagship “Charpak” programme, for Master’s degrees, exchange semesters and research internships. French companies, such as MBDA, also offer scholarships to Indian students, including tuition fee waivers and a monthly stipend.