The Impact of International Students in the USA

2014 statistics presented by the Institute of International Education Open Doors Annual Report reflect the rapid increase of international students studying in higher education institutions in the USA.

“The number of international students at colleges and universities in the United States increased by eight percent to a record high of 886,052 students in the 2013/14 academic year, confirming once again that the United States remains the destination of choice for higher education. The United States hosts more of the world’s 4.5 million globally mobile college and university students than any other country in the world, with almost double the number hosted by the United Kingdom, the second leading host country.”

Over 270,000 new students arrived in 2014 a jump of 7.7%. Another 81,000 international students attend U.S community colleges with a further 50,000 attending secondary schools (most all private schools).

U.S International student recruitment has grown rapidly over the past six years. This provides excellent opportunities for universities, colleges, secondary schools and any educational organization to benefit from the diversity that international students create on campus and also gain a significant economic advantage from the increased tuition and fees that they pay. The U.S has been slow to explore this initiative while countries like the UK, Canada, New Zealand and Australia already have international student populations between 15-25% of their total students – the US figure is marginally above 4%.

The positive economic impact of international students to the local and national community at large is substantial. In 2014 the US Department of Commerce estimated that international students contributed over $27 billion in terms of a positive economic impact to the nation.