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INDIA - ISEP Symbiosis International University

Come, study in India! 

Symbiosis International University is nestled on a beautiful 300-acre campus, called the Symbiosis Knowledge Village, located on the outskirts of the city of Pune in Maharashtra, India. The university’s name fittingly captures the quintessence of the relationship with international students; a mutually beneficial bond between India and the international student community. The university is currently is ranked first among India’s top private universities established after 2000.


“Being a student of Symbiosis was truly amazing. It gave me an opportunity to meet other students from all over the world who became my brothers and sisters. Apart from excellent knowledge, Symbiosis gave me a new family” - ISEP Symbiosis Alumni


To be eligible to participate in this program, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Good academic and judicial standing during time of application AND time of participation in program
  • Undergraduates must have completed at least two semesters of study at Lake Forest College AND have sophomore status or higher before participation. 
  • At least 18 years of age by the program’s departure date. 
  • Be able to stay at the host program for the duration of the semester, including through the exam and travel periods.
  • Minimum GPA of 2.75. Accepts lower GPA with explanation.

Students applying to ISEP must apply for an Exchange option (in any country) as a first choice but may apply to a Direct option as a back-up. Direct options may have an additional cost (see a financial section for more information).


Pune, also called Poona, city, west-central Maharashtra state, western India, at the junction of the Mula and Mutha rivers. Called “Queen of the Deccan,” Pune is the cultural capital of the Maratha people.

A sprawling complex of industrial suburbs has developed around the city. Large factories producing a wide variety of products are distributed along the roads radiating from Pune to Mumbai (Bombay), Ahmednagar, Solapur, and Satara. The old city is largely residential and commercial and is served by large-scale commuter transport. In 1961 the Panshet Dam collapsed, washing away a substantial part of the old town.

The important religious centres include Bhimashankar, site of a Jyotirlinga shrine; Dehu, birthplace of the Marathi poet-saint Tukaram; Alandi, home of Jnaneshvara (Jnanadeva), author of a well-known commentary on the Bhagavadgita, a Hindu scripture; and Karli, site of the famous Theravada Buddhist Karle (or Karla) and Bhaja cave complexes. Nearby are Meherazad and Meherabad, sites associated with Meher Baba. 


Symbiosis International University (SIU) is a private, multi-institutional university with over 40 academic institutions. Professor Dr. S B Mujumdar established Symbiosis on the principles of Vedic thought of the world as one family and is resplendent of the activities and students of several countries. Cutting-edge technologies, smart classrooms and modern infrastructure are part of the classroom experience at SIU. Service learning projects, internships, and value-added activities are also highly encouraged as a holistic part of the learning process.

Today, SIU is a clear leader in management education with several of its management institutes ranked amongst the best in the country and its alumni occupying leadership positions across the world. 

It is not surprising that Symbiosis International University has located in Pune: a thriving metropolis that embodies the intriguing mix of capitalism and spiritualism that ‘New India’ offers. At the center of academia and business, Symbiosis’ values inspired by the ideals of Vishwa Bharati and Antar Bharati, to nurture and care for all students from around the globe, fit perfectly within Pune’s culture. 

Symbiosis International University offers the kind of education needed for leadership in a rapidly changing world. Its seven faculties – law, management, computer studies, health and biomedical sciences, media, communication, and design, humanities and social sciences and engineering – transforms individuals, preparing and empowering them to make a positive impact on the world.

Program Website


Symbiosis has 47 Institutes and student strength of 30,000 on campus. SIU has a large number of foreign students from 85 different countries. The university is re-accredited with ‘A’ Grade by National Assessment & Accreditation Council (NAAC). In addition to this, the Management, Law, and Media programs are consistently ranked amongst the top ten in India

The management, law, and media programs are consistently ranked amongst the top ten in India.

Courses offered under Liberal Arts 
Courses offered at School of Media & Communication  
Courses offered at School of Design
Courses offered at School of Management

Website for Course Availability

Student Life

All international Students are assigned buddies with a view to helping them in day to day activities. Symbiosis Center for International Education (SCIE) organizes may events for international students not only studying in Symbiosis International University (SIU) but for all international students studying in Pune city. To name a few international students’ days, food festival, Christmas party, Iftar party, Diwali celebration, Raksha bandhan celebration, tree plantation drive, visit to the cultural garden, heritage walk, NGO visit, international students sports and many more. 

Students arriving on the Official Arrival Date will be met at the airport by the Universities representative if given notice at least two weeks before the official arrival date. Otherwise, students should follow arrival directions in the acceptance packet. 

Housing and Meals

Students share a room in an apartment-style residence hall with another international or local student. Students have a meal plan and can plan to eat at the school’s cafeteria. 

Financial Information

For all approved programs for guaranteed financial aid transferability, students pay their Lake Forest College tuition plus a program fee. The program fee includes orientation, ISEP coordinator, college fees, housing, and the equivalent of 19/meals per week.

ISEP costs for Exchange are usually the most cost-effective, as it is intended to promote mobility of students around the world. Direct options are available for those students that prefer to attend a school with limited availability for Exchange, though costs may be different as they are set by the host school. For students that participate in ISEP Direct, the program fee includes all of the above plus insurance. However, the program fee may be different than that of Exchange.

Here is an estimated budget for the Fall 2018/Spring 2019 programs:

Budget Item


Lake Forest College Tuition


Program fee (estimated)

Note: Spring may have added cost


Total Expected Billed by Lake Forest College


ISEP Fee due on Stage 2 Application


ISEP-required health and repatriation insurance (estimated, $90/mo)

Note: Some countries require national insurance. Check ISEP


Additional Meals


Estimated Airfare


Estimated Personal Expenses (passport, visas, immunizations, textbooks, supplies, personal expenses, additional national insurance if required, travel insurance, additional travel etc.)


Total Expected Out-of-Pocket Expenses




Tuition rates and program fees are subject to change each year, but this information was up-to-date as of August 2018. We will notify applicants, and update this page if the program fee or other estimates change.

You can discuss with Financial Aid your specific aid package and your expected family contribution.

Keep in mind that you may spend more or less in certain areas like personal expenses, travel, meals, or airfare, depending on exchange rates and your own spending habits. Classroom or lab fees are not included in this estimate and will depend on your course registration choices.  

Don’t forget to apply for scholarships! A great listing can be found here.  

  • Contact:

    For Questions About the Initial Application Process:

    Alexandra Olson
    Coordinator of the Global Engagement Office