If you are excited to come and join an Italian University there is a lot of paperwork ahead. Italian Consulate in Mumbai have to overlook all the applications from Central, West and South India, which is a lot. This makes the process a bit slower than the expectations.
It all starts when you get an admit from the University. Once you have gauged all your options and now are clear that you have to join an Italian University for your Masters, start your process right away. By the end of this post you will understand why I am saying this.
1. Get the original Degree and Transcript from the University
The very first thing you do after receiving this admit is go to your university and get the original Degree and Transcript (For Autonomous institutes, you have to go and get the degree from parent University. For example, I did my Bachelor’s from College of Engineering Pune but I had to get my degree from the Pune University. Degree from the college doesn’t work for this process. For the transcript, you can use your college’s transcript no need to get the one from University.)
For COEP, you can apply for the electronic transcript on our website. Once you pay you will receive your document in two days via mail. You can also opt for a hard copy. What I did was, I printed the transcript and got it attested by my department’s professor.
For the degree, you would have received the original on your University Convocation (I know very few people attend the one organized by University but even in this case you can opt to have it mailed to your address). If you have missed your application, go to Pune University’s site and input your details and request for it.
Degree: ₹ 700
Degree: Over a week after convocation at University or else in 3 weeks from delayed application
Transcript: 2 days for Electronic and 2 weeks for Official Hardcopy
2. Go get both of them Notarised
Once you get the degree, if it is laminated your first task, and mind you this is a hard one, is to get it delaminated. With the delaminated degree and your transcript go to your nearest court premises and get the notary stamp over the backside of the original. It will look something like this.
I got this notarized from the Court near COEP.
In few minutes if you get the right guy.
3. Get it stamped and verified from the University
Now you have to go back to your university and apply for university verification, for this they will take both the documents and give it back in two days with university stamp next to the notary stamp. University won’t verify the College transcripts.
I applied for certificate verification online on the Pune University website, printed the receipt and went to registrar office with degree and receipt. He took both of them and asked me to come in 2 days. After two days I went with the receipt they gave me the last time and collected my Degree.
Degree: ₹ 200
Degree: 2 days to 1 week
Transcript: Instantly in case of attestation
4. Attestation from State Education Department of the concerned state (Regional Attestation Centre/HRD/GAD).
Take these documents and get them attested by the any of the above.
You can do this at Maharashtra HRD in Mumbai. Go there in morning and chitchat with the pion. Get on his good books, that helps a lot to get your documents inside the office fast. By your luck, it can be an hour process or 2-day process.
1 Hour or 2 days
5. Apostle from Ministry of External Affairs
After the HRD, you will have to apply for an apostle stamp from MEA to any of there listed service providers here.
Important Note: To make your life simpler you can also apply to agencies who do all this (4 &5) for you in a week at a considerable price. Get the university stamp on your degree and college stamp on your transcript and submit these documents to them, they will do all the stamps like Sub-divisional attestation, HRD, MEA for you. Price is ₹ 2000 per document and you get it in 1 week.
I did this from Superb Enterprises near Pune University.
One has to compulsorily apostile their degree certificate. Transcript is to be apostile only if your university asks for it specifically.
Once all the stamps are done and you get your documents back in hideous conditions (I could not look at the back side of my Original Bachelor’s degree, it was full of stamps all over the place.) you have to get these documents translated from an official translator. (Beware, Not all translations are accepted in the embassy. They have list of translators on their page go through it and get it translated)
I translated my documents from a guy named Rohit Bajaj from Delhi. But I heard he stopped translation services this year. You can also opt for Indo-Italian Chamber translations, they charge you by a number of words in the document. If you decide to go with Rakesh or Rohit you will have to send them scanned copy of your documents, they will translate in two days and send you soft copy and if required can also mail you the hard copy.
As I said, I heard Rohit was out of the business of translation, but you can try your luck.
Rakesh Sharma: email@example.com
Rohit Bajaj: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rakesh or Rohit: ₹ 2000 per document
Indo-Italian Chamber: depends on Number of words in the document
2 days to 1 week
Now that you have all your documents stamped and translated you will have to go to nearest VFS office. For Pune, it's near Ruby Hall Clinic, right opposite to Pune Station, Jahangir Chowk.
7. VFS Verification
Take an appointment at VFS as soon as you can. Get all your documents ready in a packet with a cover letter stating your reason for document verification (In your case it is for DOV Application afterward)
You don’t need to verify the transcript. You only need the degree verification.
₹ 2000 per document
2 week to 1 month (Depends on your luck)
There were few people who received the verification document within a week and I had to wait for almost a month and that also after tracking and requesting for my documents 10 times to consulate in Mumbai they sent me the confirmation of the verification.
8. Apply for DOV
What is DOV? This is official proof that Student’s Bachelor’s degree is equivalent to prerequisite Italian Degree of the program he/she is going to attend.
After you receive verification confirmation, go and book another appointment at the VFS office, this time with your Degree Certificate, transcript, translation of both, verification confirmation and another cover letter fro DOV process go to the VFS and submit them.
₹ 500 per document
2 week to 1 month (Depends on your luck)
9. Go for Pre-enrollment
Consulate publish the dates for pre-enrollment interviews on their site every year. You have to go on any of these dates with University admit letter, Original Degree, 2 passport size photos, Two form A and original Passport and 2 copies. If you are going on dates published on the website I advise you go as early as you can. I reached the consulate at 6.30 in the morning and yet I was 96th in the line (That also after cutting in, thanks to my friend who was there from 5:30). You can also call and ask to schedule an appointment for you if there are no dates available when you are going to apply for the visa.
You can do this process before applying for DOV or after you get it. But keep in mind you need to have the original degree.
They take a general short interview to check if you are able to finance yourself and if you are really eligible for this course. There will be general questions regarding you're course and why that University and country.
After your interview, you will be asked to wait for an hour and they will give you quesutura and form A back which you will need for your Visa application.
After the pre-enrolment, book your tickets if you haven’t yet, book your accommodation. If you are not sure where you will be staying yet then go on booking.com and book any place with free cancellation policy for your Visa application.
10. Visa Application
Take VFS Appointment, this time for good.
Prepare your docket.
Application Form (http://www.vfs-italy.co.in/mumbai/tourist_applicationforms.html)
Scholarship Nomination Letter
Passport Size photos
Insurance (get it for 2 months and then get Italian insurance when you come here)
Travel Tickets ( One way )
Deceleration of Value
Go on the day of appointment submit and then wait for the best.
2 week to 1 month (Depends on your luck)
I received my Visa two days before my flight, so if you are delayed as well, don’t fret. Send loads of emails to the consulate and ask for the status continuously.
In next post, I will explain what you have to do once you reach Milan.
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