Study in Holland
Higher education in the Netherlands enjoys a reputation for high quality and ranks seventh best worldwide for many consecutive years. If you have the ambition to widen your academic horizon, you may as well wish to study in Holland. In this article, we explain how you as Israeli citizen can apply for a student residence permit for the Netherlands.
EU/EEA or Swiss nationality
If you are citizen of Switzerland or a country in the European Union or European Economic Area, you are entitled to study at any Dutch educational institute for higher education of your choice. You do not have to apply for a student residence permit and Dutch educational institutions will entitle you to the same rights as students with a Dutch nationality. The remainder of this article is relevant for Israeli students who aspire to study in higher education in the Netherlands and have no EU/EEA or Swiss nationality.
Dutch higher education
Holland recognizes two types of higher education; universities and “applied universities”. Universities offer bachelor as well as master degrees. Applied universities, also referred to as Higher Professional Education (abbreviated to “HBO” in Dutch), offer programs consisting of theoretical and applied courses. The quality of the study programs offered by (applied) universities is safeguarded by the Accreditation Organization of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO).
Dutch educational institutes warmly welcome international students. Though some international students are required to attend a preparatory year before starting their program of choice; for instance to learn Dutch or improve English language skills.
Study in Holland – Student Residence Permit
If you wish to request a student residence permit for the Netherlands, you have to meet general conditions that apply to each type of residence permit, namely 1) You have a valid passport or travel document, 2) You do not have any criminal records as stated in a antecedents form, 3) You will take a medical test for tuberculosis upon arrival in the Netherlands. Apart from these general conditions, there are three specific conditions for a student residence permit:
- You have (provisionally) been accepted to a full-time accredited day program of a university or applied university that is registered as a recognized sponsor by the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND).
- You have sufficient financial means to study and live in the Netherlands. The required amount is defined per month and referred to as ‘study norm’. Each year of your studies you are obliged to show that your financial means are at least equal 12 x the study norm. You may have the required amount on your own bank account or the bank account of an individual abroad, deposited at your university’s bank account or a supporting company, or receive it through a scholarship. If a person in the Netherlands sponsors you, they need to meet the minimal required amount for a Dutch person financing the study and stay of an international student
- Each year of your study, you obtain at least half of the required credits. If you fail to meet this condition, your university is obliged to report to the IND who may consequently terminate your residence permit. For preparatory programs (e.g., language course) you should obtain the full credits within the designated time (i.e., maximum 12 months).
Procedure to apply for a student residence permit
Only the (applied) university of your choice can apply for your student residence permit, unless they are a registered sponsor with the Immigration and Naturalisation Services (IND). Whether an application for a entrance visa (MVV) is also necessary depends on your nationality. The IND will decide on your application within 60 days and inform the university about the decision. In case of a positive decision, you may collect the residence permit at the IND in the Netherlands. In case of a MVV, you can collect the MVV at the Dutch embassy or consulate in your country. The student residence permit is valid for the duration of your studies plus an additional three months, with a maximum of 5 years.
Upon arrival in Holland
When you arrive in the Netherlands, you are obliged to register in the Municipal Personal Records Database (BRP) in the municipality where you are going to live. This is an obligation for any foreign national staying in the Netherlands for over 4 months. If you are staying in Holland for your studies only, you should have health coverage from your own country. If you combine your studies with and internship for which you receive at least the Dutch minimum wage or if you have a part-time job in Holland, you are subject to compulsory Dutch health insurance.
Are you ready to hit the ground running at the (applied) university of your choice in the Netherlands, though struggling with the application procedure or wondering if you meet the conditions? We are here to guide you through the process until you are ready to go. Contact advocate Joshua Pex for more information.