Open Doors Report 2008 released today by the Institute of International Education
After several years of modest rises and even post-9/11 declines this decade, the number of international students studying in the USA soared this past year, to a record total of 623,805, a 7% increase over the previous year’s enrollment of 582,984. The 7% increase is the largest year over year increase since the 1969-1970 school year, and will be widely celebrated as the result of greater emphasis on attracting international students by the US State Department and US institutes of higher education.
The Open Doors Report is compiled by the Institute of International Education, and released annually during International Education Week, which kicks off today. This year’s report shows strong growth from the top three sending countries, as the number of students in the US from India (94,563), China (81,127) and South Korea (69,124) increased 12.8%, 19.8% and 10.8%, respectively. In addition, Saudi Arabia moved to #9 on the list with a tremendous increase of 25.2% to a total of 9,873, as King Abdullah’s extremely generous scholarship program reached maturity.
The Open Doors press release from this morning quoted Allan E. Goodman, President and CEO of the Institute of International Education, “The steady increase in the number of international students in the United States reflects actions taken by the U.S. government and many individual colleges and universities to ensure that international students know they are welcome here, and that we appreciate how they contribute to the intellectual and cultural environment on campus and in the wider community. Furthering academic exchange – in both directions – is one of the best investments that we can make to strengthen U.S. higher education and research activities and foster cross-border collaboration on shared global problems such as fighting disease, protecting the environment, and countering terrorism.”
The University of Southern California maintained its top position as the school with the most international students at 7,189, followed by New York University with 6,404 and Columbia University with 6,297. US students studying abroad also showed a sharp increase of 8.2%, from 223,534 in 2205/6 to 241,791 in 2006/7.
Click here to read the Open Doors press release from IIE.
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New Rules for International Students – British Home Office
(from the UK Visa Bureau)
Last week, the British Home Office announced the new Australian-style points-based system for international students in the UK, known as Tier 4 under Home Office rules.
Under the new system for UK student visas, all universities and colleges wanting to educate nationals from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) will need a licence to do so.
As of March next year, only those licensed universities and colleges will be able to sponsor overseas non-EEA students to study in the UK.
Further, before studying at a UK licensed educational facility, foreign students will have to supply fingerprints and meet new criteria to be allowed to study in the UK.
The new system involves a ‘sponsor management system’, which includes a technology system that allows licensed sponsors to inform the UK Border Agency if students do not attend a required amount of classes.
Immigration Minister Phil Woolas said, “International students contribute £2.5bn to the UK economy in tuition fees alone. The student tier of the points system means Britain can continue to recruit good students from outside Europe.
“Those who come to Britain must play by the rules and benefit the country. This new route for students will ensure we know exactly who is coming here to study and stamp out bogus colleges which facilitate the lawbreakers.”
Click here to read the full release from the UK Visa Bureau.
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