On 11 March, the Ambassador of Italy to Latvia, HE Sebastiano Fulci, paid a visit to RSU. The aim of the visit was to meet with students from Italy and discuss cooperation opportunities with RSU Vice-Rector for Development Toms Baumanis and director of International Department Baiba Pētersone.
During the meeting, the Ambassador gave a presentation on cooperation between Italy and Latvia to the students and informed about various activities supported by the Embassy of Italy to Latvia. Mr Fulci encouraged RSU students to participate in these activities and stressed that each student who has been staying in Riga for several years is seen as a goodwill ambassador of Italy to Latvia.
“The opportunity to maintain direct contact with the embassy will allow us to have an extra support during our studies and the involvement in cultural and social events will let us feel more at home and part of the Italian community in Riga,” said RSU 3rd year medical student Maria Camilla Vedovelli and 4th year medical student Caterina Campanella.
Currently, the number of Italian students at RSU reaches 31. The majority of them study medicine and dentistry, whereas, some students from various Italian universities are here within the framework of Erasmus+ exchange programme.
The meeting encouraged Italian students to establish an Italian Student Association. “On behalf of all Italian students we would like to thank Mr Fulci and RSU International Department for the opportunity to meet. This afternoon spent exchanging opinions not only with the Ambassador, but also among us represented official start of the journey that will bring to the foundation of an Italian Student Association. We could not have expected any better start! We are looking forward to more opportunities like this meeting and hope that one day it could lead to the collaboration between the future Italian Student Association and Italian universities or healthcare organisations,” said Maria Camilla Vedovelli and Caterina Campanella.
RSU has already concluded several cooperation agreements with Italia’s institutions of higher education. Within the framework of Erasmus+ programme, RSU students and staff do on exchange visits to the universities of Genova, Naples, Udine and Padua, whereas, RSU hosts students from these universities.
Cooperation between RSU and Italy covers also other fields. RSU researchers together with Italian colleagues are engaged in international research project on myalgic encephalomyelitis or chronic fatigue syndrome, whereas, RSU library exchanges experience with the library of the University of Turin.
Mr Fulci took up the duties of the Ambassador in October 2015. He has been engaged in the field of foreign affairs since 1991. Prior to taking the position of the Ambassador of Italy to Latvia, he was an Ambassador to the Organization of American States in Washington, as well as the First Political Counsellor in the Permanent Mission of Italy to NATO. In 1989, he graduated from the University of Messina with the specialisation in international law.