THE LARGEST DROPS WERE REPORTED FROM INDIA AND CHINA, WHO TOGETHER MADE UP 47% OF THE INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS IN 2016
WASHINGTON: The number of Indian and international students applying to American colleges has dropped dramatically because of concerns and anxieties about Trump administration’s travel orders and a growing perception that the United States had become less welcoming of foreigners, according to a new survey.
“Nearly 40% of US colleges are seeing declines in applications from international students, and international student recruitment professionals report ‘a great deal of concern’ from students and their families about visas and perceptions of a less welcoming climate in the US,” said the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO) announcing preliminary findigns of a survey of 250 colleges.
But “35% reported an increase, and 26% reported no change in applicant numbers”.
The largest drop was reported by institutions for applicants from the Middle East, some of whose Muslim-majority nations have been targeted for travel bans by the Trump administration — no new visas for six countries — and others for flight restrictions on electronic devices. But the Middle East accounted for only 10,000 internationals students enrolled in US colleges in 2015-2016, which is a little under 10% of the total cohort.
The largest drops were are reported from India and China, who together made up 47% of the international students in 2016, totaling almost half a million, according to Open Door, a government-funded body studies and tracks international students and scholars.
Of the colleges surveyed, 26% reported undergraduate application declines from India and 25% reported application from China. And the drop in applications for graduate courses was 15% from India and 32% from China. The study found that concerns about the current climate in the United States was the highest among applicants from Middle East (79)%, Asia (36%) and Latin America (34%).