Portugal Fact Sheet

Portugal, officially the Portuguese Republic is located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula, and is the westernmost country of mainland Europe. The Atlantic archipelagos of the Azores and Madeira are also part of Portugal.

The territory which forms the modern Portuguese Republic witnessed a constant flow of civilizations after prehistoric times. Early influences range from the Celtic inhabitants to the Roman and Germanic peoples who made an imprint on the country's culture, history, language and ethnic composition, as well as the Moorish who occupied different parts of current Portuguese territory from the 8th to the 13th century. During the 15th and 16th centuries, with its global empire, it was one of the world's major economic, political, and cultural powers.

Portugal is a developed country, member of the European Union (since 1986) and the United Nations (since 1955); as well as a founding member of the Eurozone, OECD, NATO, and CPLP (Comunidade dos Países de Língua Portuguesa — Community of Portuguese Language Countries)

Portugal is fairly homogeneous linguistically and religiously. Native Portuguese are ethnically a combination of pre-Roman Iberians and Celts with a fair amount of Roman, along with some other minor contributions by Germanic (Visigoths, Suebi) and Jews, Berbers and Moors.

In the 2001 census, the population was 10,356,117, of which 51.7% was female. Portugal, long a country of emigration, has now become a country of net immigration, and not just from the former Indian and African colonies; by the end of 2003, legal immigrants represented about 5% of the population. The great majority of Portuguese are Roman Catholic still a large percentage considers themselves non practicer, especially in urban areas. major cities The biggest metropolitan areas are Lisbon, Porto, Braga, Coimbra, Setúbal and Aveiro.

Portugal joined the European Union in 1986 and started a process of modernization within the framework of a stable environment. It has achieved a healthy level of growth. Successive governments have implemented reforms and privatized many state-controlled firms and liberalized key areas of the economy. Portugal was one of the founding countries of the euro in 1999, and therefore is integrated into the Eurozone.

Educational exchange
The number of Portuguese students in the U.S. has decreased slightly from 981 in 2010/11 to 970 in 2011/12. These numbers include both undergraduate and graduate students, as well as ESL program students. The number of U.S. students in Portugal has had a major increase of 47% to nearly 291 U.S. students during 2010-2011. In spite of being in the traditional study abroad continent, the number of U.S. students in Portugal remains comparatively low which makes Portugal one of the best opportunities for U.S. students.

The Fulbright Information Center is a US Department Affiliated Advising Center that strives to provide accurate, comprehensive, current, and unbiased information on education in the United States. We do not endorse or rank any college or university. The Fulbright Information Center was the proud recipient of the 2004 Excellence Award for Overseas Educational Advising Centers awarded by NAFSA – Association of International Educators – with the support of Educational Testing Services - ETS.
The main services of this Center are the organization of individual and group advising sessions on undergraduate and graduate studies in the US, as well as topic specific advising sessions such as medicine, law, or MBA programs in the US; we also do credentials evaluation which include an explanation of the Portuguese educational system, information about the school and program of studies attended and a table for converting grades. The Center is also available to respond to any request from the US admissions Officers concerning Portuguese diplomas and transcripts.

The advising center started its activity in 1960, when the Fulbright Commission was created. In September 2001 the Center moved to a new location and changed its name to Fulbright Information Center. Since July 2003, the center is located at the University of Lisbon's main building as a result of a cooperative agreement signed between the Commission and the University.

The Center has implemented 16 regional and satellite information centers at Portuguese public universities, which serve as secondary centers of information, and collaborates frequently with the American Corners.

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