News / USA

Number of International Students At US Colleges Rising

Number of International Students At US Colleges Risingi
X
November 21, 2013 10:52 PM
The number of international students studying in the United States is rising. Figures released by the Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange shows the number of foreign students attending U.S. colleges and universities increased seven percent during the 2012 - 2013 academic year. That represents a record high of almost 820,000, and educators expect the upward trend to continue. VOA's Mil Arcega has more in this report.
The number of international students studying in the United States is rising.  Figures released by the Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange shows the number of foreign students attending U.S. colleges and universities increased seven percent during the 2012 - 2013 academic year.  That represents a record high of almost 820,000, and educators expect the upward trend to continue.

In the pursuit of higher learning, the United States is still the top destination.  

At the International Student House in Washington, a temporary residence for students from over 40 countries, communications student Neena Dominic from India says the United States was her number one choice.

“It’s a known fact that United States is powerful in terms of its education and its skill level.  And I wanted to get a taste of it," she said.

Neena is part of the growing number of students who come to the United States to study.
 
The majority come from China with over 235-thousand students attending U.S. colleges -- followed by India, South Korea and Saudi Arabia.  

Zheng Zhu says the U.S. educational system has surpassed his expectations. But he says the biggest surprise has been Americans.

“I would say U.S. people probably are much nice than what I thought.  Really? Yeah," he said.

Besides making new friends, Zheng says his experience has expanded his understanding of the U.S.

But Alan Goodman, President of the Institute for International Education, says cultural exchange is a two-way street.

“International should be part of everybody’s education.  We should encourage that.  We should require every freshman entering American higher education to enter with a passport, and then to make plans with their faculty member over the course of the four years to use that passport," he said.

Although the number of Americans studying abroad rose three percent to nearly 300 thousand last year -- fewer than 10 percent of American college students have studied overseas -- most for only one semester.

That's unfortunate says Neena Dominic.

“I came here and I realized one thing. While we know a lot about America, Americans don’t know much about our countries," she said.

Another criticism is that immigration laws severely limit the number of students able to live and work in the U.S. after receiving their degrees.  

Lawmakers are considering more options to keep the best and the brightest.  But Evan Ryan, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs, says current laws reflect American policy.


“Our mission really is to bring people here to study but then to have them return home because our belief is that’s the only way to increase mutual understanding," she said.

Zheng Zhu agrees an overseas education promotes a larger world view, which he says, could help reduce global conflicts.

"If you have more cultural communications - people from China go to America, and let American students go to China; build mutual understanding,  I think it would solve this problem," he said.

International students contribute $24 billion to the U.S. economy, with the majority paying full tuition. Their top destinations - California, New York and Texas.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs