Set up in 1969, Federal University of Pelotas (UFPEL) is based in the small city of Pelotas (population: 250,000-499,999), in the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. UFPEL is spread over four campuses: Ciências Sociais, Capão do Leão, Ciências da Saúde and Porto, which includes 22 colleges and schools. Many of its buildings are registered as having architectural and historical value and include many esteemed artworks and sculptures.
There is also a library and sports facilities, as well as study abroad and exchange programs, maintained by UFPEL’s 75 agreements with higher education establishments across 25 different countries.
Students can choose from 99 undergraduate programs, 39 master's courses and 16 doctoral programs at its 20 academic units, which include a Higher School of Physical Education and a Conservatory of Music.
UFPEL offers the option of distance learning through a federal government initiative called Universidade Aberta do Brazil (Brazil Open University) and also grants many scientific and technological research scholarships and awards for young talent. In 2013, the Coordination for Technological Innovation registered 15 new patent applications.
A recognised leader in terms of its extension programs, UFPEL facilitates interaction and work between professors, students and technical administrative staff members with the community beyond the university campus. Partnerships with community associations, schools, public institutions, NGOs and businesses span a range of fields and disciplines. Through this political, economic and cultural cooperation, UFPEL plays a key role in developing the communities of Rio Grande do Sul and southern Brazil.