Indian student applications on the decline at US universities
A recent joint survey conducted by a few agencies in the US said that the Indian student applications to US universities has seen a major decline. Due to the recent hate crimes along with potential major visa policy changes by the Donald Trump government has instilled fear and uncertainty among Indian students. The survey was jointly conducted by American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, Association of International Educators, the Institute of International Education, the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) and its subgroup International Association for College Admission Counseling (ACAC).
As seen in the preliminary results of the survey conducted across 250 universities and colleges in America, a decline of 26 percent and 15 percent, in undergraduate and postgraduate applications respectively, was seen among Indian students.
The 'Open Doors 2016' report will be released sometime this week.
India and China make up for 47% of international students studying abroad in the US with around 50,000 students currently studying at various US universities. US universities have seen an average drop of 40% in international applications.
A decline of 25 percent in undergraduate applications and 32 percent in postgraduate applications was seen for students coming in from China for US study abroad programs.
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The main concern cited by international students and their families is the less welcoming environment in the US as of today along with the perceived visa rejections for anyone applying from the Indian subcontinent and China.
Portland State's President, Wim Wiewel, who visited India recently, said, "I'd say the rhetoric and actual executive orders are definitely having a chilling effect on decisions by current applicants/admitted students, and by extension are likely to affect future applicants as well."
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The other factors that are influencing the decline are the recent demonetization and weak value of Indian Rupee against US Dollar.
The University of Portland had a 27% decline in the number of Indian students for 2017 Fall Admission.
He also said, "However, we were struck by how much US higher education is still considered the holy grail, and that especially in the southern half of India almost every middle class family seems to have a relative in the US. Thus, if nothing too bad happens in the future we will recover from this, but people are watching."
Associate Vice President, Educational Outreach and International Programs, Wayne University, Ahmad Ezzeddine said, "Those events affect us, whether we like it or not. The impact is not just going to be on Indian nationals. It could impact other students from other countries who may now be concerned about coming."