Universities recruit foreign students to offset decline in college population - Global Education Times

Universities recruit foreign students to offset decline in college population

World

Educational institutions have switched to targeting the international market to recruit foreign students amid their countries’ defunding of education.

In a report entitled “Global Perspectives on International Student Employability” made by the International Education Association of Australia or IEAA, it said that international study destinations have experienced a “general defunding of public education” that had led to the decline in the number of college-aged population.

Recruit foreign students to offset lower revenues

To offset the supposed lower revenues, universities have switched their focus to the foreign student market and the drive to internationalise campuses and boost the global competency of graduating students. Such moves were said to be important in helping expand their international enrolments.

The scope of the study were major English-speaking countries such as New Zealand, Canada, Australia, Germany, United States, Netherlands, Ireland, Sweden, and the United Kingdom.

All countries allow in-work and post-study work stays, with Australia offering the longest stay of two to four years.

It was followed by Canada with up to three years and New Zealand from one year to three years; Germany with up to one year and six months; Ireland, from six months to two years; the Netherlands and the United States, up to one year each; and Sweden, up to six months.

United Kingdom offers the shortest post-study work stay of only 3/6 months to up to one year.

“It is no surprise then that these markets, which also charge the highest differential tuition fees for international students, have sought to position their brands around employability through policies that allow international students to work during their studies and to stay in the host country and work for a fixed period after graduation,” the IEAA said.

“These same countries also recognise the value of retaining the highly qualified graduates in their labour market and periodically revise their immigration policy settings to align with changing market conditions,” it added.

However, the IEAA underscored the need for additional support for foreign students to secure employability in their host countries amid the career transition services that have not kept pace with the growing number of international students globally.

Among the factors affecting post-study employment include language barrier, lack of exposure to the host countries’ work environment, insufficient professional networks, and lack of awareness of work policies.

Photo: Pang Yuhao

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