US Colleges, Universities See Sharp Losses During Pandemic
The number of foreign students studying at U.S. colleges and universities sharply declined for the school year that started in September 2020. Experts attribute the decline to the COVID-19 pandemic.
A survey of almost 3,000 institutions of higher education in the U.S. showed a 15% decrease in the number of international students attending the 2020-2021 school year.
The number of new student enrollments was slashed by 45.6%.
This brings the total of enrolled international students to 914,095, the first time since the 2015-2016 academic year the number fell below the 1 million mark after a decade of swift increases.
International students comprise 4.6% of the nearly 20 million students enrolled in U.S. higher education.
The number of students from China and India continue to dominate enrollment at U.S. colleges and universities. Combined, they continue to make up more than half of all the international students in the U.S.
Students from China declined by 14.8% from the previous year to 317,299, or 34.7% of all international students.
Students from India declined by 13.2% from the previous year to 167,583, or 18.3% of all international students.
The pandemic emanated from China in December 2019. International students left the U.S. to return to their home countries for winter break, with many returning to U.S. campuses in January 2020. U.S. campuses locked down in March 2020 around spring break, and all students were sent home, went home or remained in the U.S. as colleges and universities moved classes to online learning.
The research was conducted by the Institute of International Education (IIE), headquartered in New York, and released November 15. IIE, founded in 1919, is a nonprofit organization funded by the U.S. State Department, and it focuses on “international student exchange and aid, foreign affairs, and international peace and security,” according to its website. Its mission is to "build more peaceful and equitable societies by advancing scholarship, building economies and promoting access to opportunity."
New York University remained the top destination school for international students among all U.S. colleges and universities. New York state hosted the second-largest amount — 106,894 of the 914,095 total — after first-place California, which hosted 132,758 students. The University of Southern California moved from the third to the fourth slot – overtaken by New York City’s Columbia University – but the University of California campuses in San Diego, Los Angeles, Berkeley, Irvine and Davis were included in the top 18.
Northeastern University in Boston was the second most-popular school for international students: 15,880 of the 66,273 who attend school in Massachusetts. Another 10,646 international students attended Boston University, located nearby, among at least 10 other colleges and universities in an area known locally as the Miracle Mile.
IIE also released a more optimistic Fall snapshot that surveyed more than 860 institutions about enrollment for the school year that started in August and September 2021.
“The findings of the 2021 Fall International Student Enrollment Snapshot reflect the resilience of U.S. higher education institutions and student mobility during the COVID-19 pandemic,” IIE stated. “Higher education institutions report a 68% increase in the number of new international students enrolling for the first time at a U.S. institution in the U.S. or online from abroad, a surge from the 46% decline reported in Open Doors 2021.”
Of those 860 institutions, 70% reported an increase in new student enrollment, while 10% said enrollment was maintained and 20% reported a decrease.
As of fall 2021, 99% of colleges and universities that participated in the survey reported holding classes in person or a hybrid of in person and online. At least 65% reported having international students on campus.
Seventy-seven percent reported spending as much, if not more, on student recruitment compared to previous years.
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Iowa’s Clark Becomes NCAA Division-I All-Time Leading Scorer for Men’s and Women’s Basketball
Iowa star Caitlin Clark became the all-time NCAA Division I scoring leader on Sunday, breaking the late Pete Maravich's 54-year-old record when she made two free throws after a technical foul was called in the No. 6 Hawkeyes' game against No. 2 Ohio State.
Clark entered the game in Iowa City needing 18 points to pass Maravich's total of 3,667, amassed in just 83 games over three seasons at LSU (1967-70).
Maravich's record fell four days after Clark broke Lynette Woodard's major college women's record with 33 points against Minnesota on Wednesday.
Clark's record-setting points Sunday came in improbable fashion. Best-known for her long 3-point shots, she instead went past Maravich after Ohio State was called for a technical foul with less than a second to go in the first half.
Clark swished both free throws to run her career total to 3,668 points; she had no immediate reaction after the second shot went through, as if it hadn't sunk in yet.
Asked in a television interview at halftime if she was aware of the record when she stepped to the line, Clark said, "Not really. When they announced it and everybody screamed, that's when I knew."
Clark got off to a slow start. Her first shot was a 3-pointer that bounced off the rim. She missed a layup and from deep on the right wing before making a 3 from the left side for her first basket.
After starting 2 for 7, she made 3 of her next 4 shots — including three straight 3-pointers, each deeper than the previous.
Woodard was among the attendees at Carver-Hawkeye Arena to help Clark celebrate senior day. Also on hand were basketball great Maya Moore, who was Clark's favorite player, and Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher Nolan Ryan.
On Thursday, Clark announced she would enter the 2024 WNBA draft and skip the fifth year of eligibility available to athletes who competed during the COVID-19 pandemic. She is projected to be the No. 1 overall pick by the Indiana Fever, and the WNBA already is seeing a rise in ticket sales.
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"Listen, this is the greatest ticket on the planet right now," Woodard said in an interview with ESPN before the game. "Hey, I'm going to enjoy this right now."
Clark is all but assured of one or two more appearances at the arena in Iowa City after Sunday. Iowa is projected to be a No. 2 seed for the NCAA Tournament, meaning it would be at home for the first two rounds.
Pearl Moore of Francis Marion owns the overall women's record with 4,061 points from 1975-79 at the small-college level in the AIAW. Moore had 177 points at Anderson Junior College before enrolling at Francis Marion.
Clark was 393 behind Moore as of halftime Sunday, and she has only three to 10 more games left in an Iowa uniform depending on how far the Hawkeyes advance in the Big Ten and NCAA tournaments.
The fall of Maravich's record will be subject to scrutiny.
Maravich's all-time scoring mark is one of the more remarkable in sports history. There was no shot clock or 3-point line in his era. The 3-point line was adopted in 1986.
Maravich averaged 44.2 points per game. He scored more than 60 in a game four times, topping out at 69 against Alabama on Feb. 7, 1970.
Clark averages 28.3 points for her career and was playing in her 130th game Sunday. Her career-best output was 49 points against Michigan on Feb. 15, when she passed Kelsey Plum as the NCAA women's Division I career scoring leader.
Clark has 54 games with at least 30 points, the most of any player in men's or women's college basketball over the last 25 years. She has six triple-doubles this season and 17 in her career.
"What Caitlin's done has been amazing. She's a fantastic player, great for the women's game and basketball in general," Maravich's eldest son, Jaeson, told The Associated Press last week.
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