Note From the Editor
While international student enrollment numbers have been substantially rising in the past months showing a steady return to normalcy in key study destinations, sadly, so are the challenges that international students face. In Canada, a student faces deportation after getting a fake admission letter from a bogus agent. In Ireland, some two-thirds of international students have encountered or observed racism, such as verbal or physical maltreatment, according to a recent study. In Norway, new international students from countries outside the European Economic Area and Switzerland will now be required to pay tuition.
These and more key developments this week on MSM Reporter.
A survey by the National Center for Fair and Open Testing (FairTest) in the US confirmed that 80% of US colleges and universities that award bachelor’s degrees will not request ACT or SAT scores from applicants for admission to classes starting in the autumn of 2023. FairTest released a list in November that showed at least 1,835 US colleges and universities are currently adopting either ACT/SAT-optional or test score-free practices. Moreover, Ivy League colleges including Yale, Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, and Columbia have also chosen to adopt test-optional admissions standards for selecting applicants for their undergraduate programs. This means that the interest letters, essays, and interviews that students submit will be used to evaluate them.
An international student who discovered that the admission letter his agent used for his application had been falsified is in danger of being deported. Although the student claimed to have no interest in studying business, his education agent advised him that doing so would increase his chances of obtaining a visa and allow him to switch to a different program once he arrived in the country. The international student entered Canada in 2018, but the Canada Border Services Agency has determined that he is inadmissible due to misrepresentation since he used a false acceptance letter to get his study permit. He will have to leave Canada and will be prohibited from returning for five years if the ruling continues to stand.
The number of Nigerian students studying in the UK has risen to an all-time high of 44,195 for the academic year 2021/22, according to the most recent official statistics from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA). This figure is significantly higher than the 21,305 students recorded in the preceding year, indicating a notable growth. In addition, a recent study by SBM Intelligence found that in 2021, Nigerian students and their families made an estimated £1.93 billion in economic contributions to the UK. International students paid £680.6 million on tuition, followed by £408.4 million for rent, £151.3 million for national insurance, £54.4 million for tax on the working spouse, £41.8 million for the NHS, and £41.7 million for visa costs.
All new international students from countries outside the European Economic Area and Switzerland will now be required to pay tuition, according to a decision made by the Norwegian Parliament, the Storting. The decision came after a proposal to end tuition-free university enrolment for citizens of third countries was brought to the Parliament on Friday, March 24. As a result, public universities and colleges will start charging international students enrollment fees for the fall semester of this year. Each institution shall determine its fee schedule, which must at least cover its educational expenses.
According to recent projections from the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), by the end of the decade, there will be an expected 20% increase in the number of Northern Ireland school leavers applying for university admission. It is anticipated that Northern Ireland will experience a greater increase in demand for housing than Scotland or Wales. However, severe budget cuts to the Department for the Economy (DfE), which funds higher education, may occur. This might reduce the number of open spots for students at Northern Ireland’s universities. The amount of cash supplied by the DfE determines how many undergraduate students from Northern Ireland can currently attend nearby universities.
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will be visiting China with an emphasis on trade and education to increase Melbourne’s appeal as a study-abroad destination for Chinese students. Mr. Andrews will meet with various Chinese authorities to make Melbourne more desirable as a college option for Chinese students by out-competing both home and foreign rivals. He stated during a media conference that the international education sector in Victoria contributes close to $13-14 billion worth of economic activity.
Someone who has been closely following the EB-5 program, which is the U.S. green card by investment program, may need to pay attention to the upcoming calendar. The proposed Union Budget 2023 could implement several new restrictions from July 1 that could impact EB-5 investments processed through India’s banking system, including higher taxes on outward financial transfers from the country. The EB-5 program is popular among Indian nationals because it doesn’t have the same restrictions as other U.S. visas regarding where and when a foreign national can work, study, live, and travel. Parents in India appreciate the world-class education that U.S. colleges offer, and the EB-5 visa can provide them with access to tuition discounts at these institutions for their children.
According to a recent announcement, China would no longer accept postsecondary credentials obtained by Chinese students through online study abroad programs. According to the Ministry of Education’s declaration in January 2023, Chinese students enrolled in foreign universities must take in-person classes for their degrees or diplomas to be acknowledged by the Chinese government or by Chinese businesses. The choice signals a change in policy from 2020, when the Chinese government, in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, allowed students to obtain foreign certificates through online study. As a result of the relaxation of travel restrictions and the restart of flights from China to Canada, enrollment numbers in Canadian universities have returned to those from before the global higher education pandemic.
The Office for National Statistics has reported that only a quarter of the 136,000 non-UK-born persons residing in England and Wales on census day in March 2021, who were expected to remain for less than a year, were from the European Union, a decrease from the 35% reported in 2011. This outcome serves to demonstrate the impact of the Brexit decision in 2016 on the demographic composition of the country, as well as the diminishing of what was once a steady influx of employees upon which the UK relied. The number of short-term residents in 2021 was 59,000 lower than in 2011, posing a challenge for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak as he endeavors to reconcile decreasing immigration with economic growth. Reduction suggests students may have avoided the UK after the Brexit vote and withdrawal from the EU’s Erasmus program.
A recent study conducted by the Irish Council for International Students (ICOS) has revealed that two-thirds of international students in Ireland have encountered or observed racism, such as verbal or physical maltreatment. Although the majority of perpetrators are youths or adolescents, some have been subjected to institutional racism. To solve this issue, ICOS believes that a complete strategy is required, and they advocate for more investment in promoting knowledge of human and equality rights, educational and diversity initiatives, as well as enhanced reporting mechanisms and aid for victims of racism.
Statistics Portugal has reported that in the 2021/22 academic year, there were 69,965 international students enrolled in Portuguese higher education institutions. Of these, the majority were female students from overseas. The majority of these students opted for courses in Management and Administration, and the majority of those chose universities in Lisbon or Porto. Due to high rents and a limited supply of student housing, there is a high demand for such accommodation in Portugal. Additionally, the number of 25- to 35-year-olds with tertiary qualifications in Portugal has increased from 13% in 2000 to 47% in 2021. There has also been a shift in the preferences of international students, with fewer choosing to pursue natural sciences and more opting for engineering.
The Ministry of Science in Iran is providing residence and permits to international students from Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, and Syria. Almost 100,000 students from 119 countries are studying in Iran, and this figure is anticipated to quadruple in the next three years. Iran is one of the 15 nations effective in recruiting foreign students, with a potential of over 250,000 international students by 2026.
Acadia University, located in Wolfville, Nova Scotia, Canada, and founded in 1838, is a public liberal arts university that offers undergraduate and graduate programs in a wide range of fields including arts, business, science, and professional studies. Acadia – home to several research centers and institutes that focus on areas such as environmental studies, rural development, and community health – is known for its small class sizes, personalized education, and a strong sense of community. It offers a wide range of extracurricular activities including athletics, music, theater, and volunteer opportunities. The University is considered one of the best universities in Canada for liberal arts and science education.
The Master of Science in Information Systems (MSIS) is a STEM-designated degree that prepares individuals for positions in senior management. This 30-credit program is available to full-time and part-time students, and overseas students are eligible for a STEM OPT Extension. Senior Business Analyst, System Administrator, Information Technology Director, Chief Information Officer, Information Security Manager, and Applications Analyst are all common professional pathways. Tuition advantages are available for university partners, as well as a 4+1 program that allows Rider undergraduates to complete their MSIS in one year.
MSM Reporter is collated by a globally spread team of MSM and is published every Thursday.