The University of Vale do Itajaí (Univali) is one of the most important higher education institutions in Brazil. Its campuses are located along the central northern coast of the State of Santa Catarina, in the towns of Itajaí (main campus), Balneário Camboriú, Biguaçu, Florianópolis, Balneário Piçarras, São José and Tijucas.
Univali was ranked the best higher education institution in the South of Brazil for sustainability, according to the UI GreenMetric World University Ranking 2017. And when it comes to educational performance, Univali has proven itself to be a great institution, consistently placed high in the Brazilian rankings over the years. These achievements are indicators of the results of the university’s social policies and increasing improvements in teaching excellence.
The university has a high quality infrastructure, with classrooms and Laboratories that are equipped with the latest technology and monitored by highly trained professionals. There are also dedicated spaces for practical activities, such as clinics, agencies, offices, a theatre, auditoriums,
gymnasiums, sport courts, swimming pools, and nine libraries with a vast and diversified archive.
The history of the University of Vale do Itajaí began in September 1964, when it was registered as the SIES - Sociedade Itajaiense de Ensino Superior (Society of Higher Education of Itajaí), marking its foundation. In October 1978, the University Campus of Itajaí was inaugurated, then called the Fundação do Polo Geoeducacional do Vale do Itajaí, or FEPEVI.
In February 1986, Univali was granted university status by the MEC (Brazilian Ministry of Education). The FEPEVI then became what we know today, Univali - University of Vale do Itajaí.
In the 1990s, as the demands of neighboring regions grew, the university began a process of expansion. New campuses were built: one in Balneário Camboriú (1990), one in Tijucas (1990), two in Biguaçu (1991), two in São José (1995), and one in Balneário Piçarras (1997). Finally, in 2008, the Florianópolis campus was inaugurated, in the capital city of the State of Santa Catarina.
Univali is one of the largest institutions in Santa Catarina, and has a direct influence on the economic, social and cultural development of the State.
Univali continues its mission to train students to practice their chosen professions, with vision and global performance, through its offer of state-of-the-art teaching, research and extension activities.
Dr. Valdir Cechinel Filho is the current rector, and President of the Univali Foundation. Professor Cechinel holds a Master’s degree and a PhD in Organic Chemistry from the Federal University of Santa Catarina (UFSC). Prior to that, he was vice-rector for postgraduate, Research, Extension and Culture Programs at Univali.
Professor Cechinel has published more than 350 scientific articles in national and international specialized publications. He has authored 35 books and book chapters, and acts as an associate editor and scientific advisor for numerous specialized publications.
Professor Cechinel was elected as the Rector and President of the Univali Foundation in March 2018, with a term of office through to 2022.
“Univali is a university that is open to the world; whether to those we receive from abroad, or to our academic community that experiences new cultures when visiting other countries. We seek to encourage the development of global citizens who, pushing forward the frontiers, will ally a firm theoretical foundation with practical experiences that generate curricular scope and encourage them to be agents for the dissemination of knowledge and transformation of their realities".
Univali’s multicampus structure and operating policy enable it to meet the needs of the academic and local communities across its entire area of coverage, promoting local and global growth through the production and socialization of knowledge through its education, research and extension programs.