Keywords: Immigrant Origins; Higher Education; School Choices; Transitions.
Students with immigrant background entering higher education is a little explored topic in Italy. The article offers a contribution to the debate, since it recalls some results of international research on the subject and it analyzes some findings of a qualitative case study conducted in an Italian university with a group of students with immigrant origins. It investigates how the school previous choices, the immigrant origins, the social and cultural capital, the teacher's advice affect access to the university. The analysis highlights the positive impact of the permeability of our school system and the negative one of the weak school guidance policies. Results show that school transitions are negatively affected by the low socio-economic capital and the poor school system knowledge due to migrant background. Nevertheless, the rational choices of investment in education are important and strictly connected to the positive secondary effects of migrant origins.