More international students on American campuses

IIE logoAmerican higher education saw a record number of international students this past academic year.  Let’s look at some details from the IIE report.

The number of internationals: 886,052 students took classes.  That’s nearly one million, and a rising number.

This marks the eighth consecutive year that Open Doors reported expansion in the total number of international students in U.S. higher education… and the rate of increase has risen steadily for the past four years…

The origin of students: most of these students came from south and east Asia.  Here are the top ten, according to IIE:

International students by nationChina, India, South Korea and you have more than one half of the foreign student population.

Which campuses attract the greatest number of foreign students?

New York University is now the host of the largest number of international students, moving up from the number four spot. The University of Southern California is now the second leading host, after twelve years as number one. These two universities were followed by University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Columbia University (moving up to #4), and Purdue University…

There’s nothing shockingly new in this study.  It’s a snapshot of a rising trend in world education, a pointer to an increasingly important part of American higher education.

We can connect it to the decline in the total number of students enrolled (source).  And also note this economic aspect:

International students contribute more than $27 billion to the U.S. economy, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Open Doors 2014 reports that about 74 percent of all international students receive the majority of their funds from sources outside of the United States, including personal and family sources as well as assistance from their home country governments or universities.

I can easily imagine a medium-term future where 1/4th of U.S. college and university students come from abroad.


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