The University of Perugia was founded in 1308. In that year, Pope Clement V issued a bull entitled Super specula, which granted the Studium of the city the authority to engage in higher education. The bull made Perugia a leggere generaliter, giving its degree courses universal validity and recognition. Formal imperial recognition of the University was conveyed in 1355, when Emperor Charles I granted Perugia the permanent right to have a University and to award degrees to students from all nations. In the 14th century, the University offered degrees in two fields: Law and General Arts.
Today, research, education and consulting activities in the various disciplines are organized in 16 Departments, with about 23,500 students, 1,100 professors and researchers and 1,000 staff members. The University offers study programs also in two other Umbrian towns: Assisi and Terni.
In recent years, the University has undertaken a broad renewal of its degree programs and curricula, which prepare students to meet the demands of the labor market and to satisfy the needs for innovation expressed by employers in private and public sectors. Nowadays, the University of Perugia offers a vast array of degree programs, which cover nearly all fields of study authorized by the national Ministry of Higher Education. The University's teaching faculty combines a long and solid tradition of excellence with a commitment to innovation and an interdisciplinary approach that ensures students the synergies needed for the acquisition of flexible educational training based on a mixture of skills and abilities. Post-graduate degrees are offered in top rated specialization schools and doctoral programs, as well a variety of masters programs in the various academic disciplines.
On the international level, the University remains firmly committed to developing collaborative relationships with European and non European Universities, to facilitate and improve international advanced study opportunities for its students. The European Commission has recently awarded the University the prestigious ECTS label for excellence in the application of the European Credit Transfer System in all of its degree programs – first and second cycles and single cycle – confirming the high quality of our expanded international endeavors.
Our commitment to internationalization has been given concrete form through the establishment of working agreements with 361 institutions of higher learning throughout the European Union eligible for participation in the Erasmus program, and about 90 cooperation agreements with European and extra-European universities for the development of collaborative initiatives in research and education. Several degree programs available at the University of Perugia already confer double degrees or European degree.
The University holds a Language Center (CLA) that delivers Italian courses to international students, as well as English, French, German courses and is endowed with the most up-to-date facilities of language learning and a staff of highly qualified mother-tongue teachers. The University holds a Library Services Centre (CSB), operating 13 libraries, and the University Centre for Scientific Museums (CAMS). Furthermore, students' academic and scientific training is enriched and supplemented by career services, provided by the Orientation Service and the Job Placement Service, and by outstanding sports and athletic facilities: the University Sports Centre (CUS) and the Giuseppe Bambagioni Sports and Recreation Centre. The University has a strong commitment towards disabled students, and is making constant efforts to improve their studying and educational experience.
Currently, there are about 50 research groups that received grants from the European Research network. The scientific research and education conducted in the University Departments is amplified by the activities of numerous specialized institutes and centers, the Teaching Hospital in Veterinary Medicine, and three internationally recognized centers of excellence: the Centre for Innovative Applied Nanostructural Materials in Chemistry, Physics, and Biomedicine (CEMIN), the Beer Research Centre (CRB), and the Centre for Innovative Applied Scientific Technologies in Archaeological and Art Historical Research (SMAart).