The university is an institution that in reality is as divided as the nobility. The different academies that rival each other, but no matter what, they know how much their current power has costed them, so they'll never get their rivarly to reduce the power that the university holds right now.
No one in Umbria doubts the enormous power of the university, as it gathers all those who have talent for the arcane arts and instructs them. However, many types of students are present in this organization and after finishing their studies, they can become member, mages or not. Scholars, arcanists, theologians, alchemists, philosophers... no matter the area, all have a place at the University.
Every academy has a principal, elected by the master scholars of the university among their ranks. The master scholar is a tittle that can only be achieved being one of the best erudites of their art, requires at least three major discoveries or masterpieces and passing a difficult test judged by the other masters of their area besides the principal. The principal and the masters decide the internal politics and structure of the academy.
Bellow the masters are the erudites: researchers, lorekeepers and teachers of the academy. They are the lowest rank of the magisterium with right to be elected as representative in the Great and General Council
. Being an erudite requires working for the university and being a gradute from one of the umbrian academies.
Working for the university are the other workers, most of them mere servants who works on the academy grounds, like cleaners, librarians or gardeners.
Another part of the university is the militant order, formed by those with arcane talent and also combat training. Its a military organization inside the university. They are directed by the Grand Master and its captains, who are considered masters because of their rank. The lower ranks are considered equivalent to erudite as long as they have graduated on some arcane art. Their duty is to represent the university at the armies, protect the academy and mantaining order on its grounds, as well as hunting rogue mages.
Preserve and create knowledge
Mantain their social power
They provide the mages to the army, being an invaluable asset to umbrian military.
Also they hunt rogue mages, being much more efficient at this than other with no magical knowledge.
The university was just a knowledge institution without any real power on the times of the Santuarian and Aquisgran empires. In the Umbria duchy, several mages were teaching their art despite the imperial ban, but they were forced to do so in secret.
When the Dawn Kingdom
was attacking Umbria and the empire was unable to send help due the war with the werebeasts they offered the help they needed in exchange of removing the Imperial Ban. After some negotiations and the impresive results of boosting the military with magic users, the University as we know it and the Umbrian Ban was born.
While magic besides the dark arts (Necromancy, mind control and witchcraft) are not persecuted, Aquisgran bans the oficial institutions from teaching them, considering that a widespread knowledge of magic promotes dark arts and even other magics, are impure and corrupting to a minor extent.
Umbrians still ban dark arts like the empire does, but they allow the university to rule over magic and teach it. On the other hand, the university is responsible of providing magic users to support the army and persecuting rogue mages: the ones who practice darks arts and also outlaws that use the arcane to commit crimes.