Switzerland is an excellent location for living, studying, and working. Its cultural variety, beautiful landscape, and innovative environment offer ﬁrst-class surroundings for both personal well-being and career advancement. It is more than chocolates, cheese and watches. Education, cutting- edge research and innovation are driving the country. With its amazing cuisine, four national languages, horological eminence and more than 1.5 million cows, Switzerland offers an international study experience like no other.
Switzerland’s economy is based on a highly qualiﬁed labour force performing highly skilled work. The main areas include microtechnology, hitech, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals, as well as banking and insurance know- how. The service sector now employs the greatest number of people.
Most of the people working in Switzerland are employed by small and medium-sized enterprises, which play an extremely important role in the Swiss economy.
If you love to ski and snowboard, there’s no place better than Switzerland. And if you don’t love to ski and snowboard, there’s no better place to learn. Students are eligible for an inexpensive year-long ski pass to some of the world’s best slopes. From Zermatt to St. Moritz, Switzerland is a mecca for winter sports enthusiasts. The summer, meanwhile, brings stunning views and clear lake swimming.
Switzerland’s charms aren’t just natural. From the jaw- dropping architecture of historic castles to major cities with advanced facilities and cutting-edge technology, Switzerland balances rural charm with urbane sophistication.
Switzerland has an area of 41,285 square kilometres (15,940 square miles). It measures 220 kilometers (137 miles) from north to south and 350 km (217 miles) from east to west. It is divided into 26 cantons. There are approximately 8 million people.
Demographic trends are being inﬂuenced by multilingualism, the rising average age and the high proportion of foreigners living in the country. Switzerland has four unevenly distributed languages and a wealth of dialects.
German (63.5 %) is by far the most widely spoken language in Switzerland: 19 of the country’s 26 cantons are predominantly (Swiss) German-speaking.
French (22.5 %) is spoken in the western part of the country, the «Suisse Romande.» Four cantons are French-speaking: Geneva, Jura, Neuchâtel and Vaud. Three cantons are bilingual: in Bern, Fribourg and Valais both French and German are spoken.
Italian (8.1 %) is spoken in Ticino and four southern valleys of Canton Graubünden. Rhaeto-Rumantsch (0.5 %) is spoken in the only trilingual canton, Graubünden. The other two languages spoken there are German and Italian. Rumantsch, like Italian and French, is a language with Latin roots. It is spoken by just 0.5% of the total Swiss population.
Other languages (6.6 %) The many foreigners resident in Switzerland have brought with them their own languages, which taken as a whole now outnumber both Rumantsch and Italian. The 2000 census showed that speakers of Serbian/Croatian were the largest foreign language group, with 1.4% of the population. English was the main language for 1%.