A Report and Trend Analysis on Indian Students to US

January 06, 2020
There is a decreasing trend among the Indian students reaching the US to seek education over the years, as per a report. As per the Open Doors Report focusing on International Educational Exchange, the yearly growth of students from India, to the US fell from 12.3 percent in 2016-17 and reached 5.4 percent in 2017-18. In 2018-19 it was to 2.9 percent. Indian students to the US grew to 202,014 in 2018-19 from 186,267 in 2016-17.

A Report and Trend Analysis on Indian Students to US

The Current Trends

The report by the Graduate Management Admission Council entitled Early Warning Signals: A Global Race for Talent shows the percentage of Indians sending their scores in the Graduate Management Admission Test to business schools of the US declined to 45 percent in 2018 from 57 percent in 2014. Also in the same period, the percentage was 19 in Indian GMAT takers who send their scores to schools based in India from 15 percent. The reason here is lacking policies that are student-friendly and harsh visa norms. In contrast competing destinations have relaxed regulations especially in Canada, Germany, Australia, and the UK.

GMAC, states that in the last five years, students from India that took interest in the US institutions was 39 percent in 2018, as against 54 percent in 2014.  

Other Nations

• In Canada earlier it was 4.7 percent and presently it is 12.2 percent,

• France has 2.4 percent and presently it is 8.1 percent, 

• Germany 2.1 percent and presently it is 4.4 percent, 

• The UK 6.6 percent and presently it is 8.3 percent. 

• Finally, for Singapore, it was 3.8 percent and presently it is 4.9 percent as the favorite destination. 

The GMAC Chairperson has stated that in the last few years, there was a major decline of interested students in a few regions of the world that included the US.

Some Changes are Necessary

The policymakers need to pay attention to the loss of interest among the international students in these regions. It is also a warning to them that they will lose the talent race. Some features like a change in immigration policy, related to work permission after the graduation, make a huge difference to develop the economies. The governments can take a few concrete steps to advance the flow of talent and achieve growth.

The factors that are responsible for this decline in the US figures are:

• Changes to H-1B visa cap, resulting in few job opportunities for global students after graduation as well as uncertainty about the future.

• There was an annual 195,000 cap, in H-1B visas which expired in 2004 and presently it is 85,000. It is issued on the timing of arrival basis, but every year there is a huge demand for H-1B visas.

Some Important Facts

In 2019, the numbers of applicants were 190,098 in the H-1B category. Many Indian students feel that not obtaining the US job after graduation prevents them to pursue a business school.

Overseas education providers of India expect a further declining trend in 2020. There were new destinations during the last three years.

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