Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Top 10 States Hosting International Students: No. 3, Texas

By Xiao Lu 
World Education Services

Texas is home to some of the biggest cities in the United States – Houston, San Antonio and Dallas all rank in the top 10 by population – but the Lone Star State is best known for the cowboys and cattle ranchers of its sunny countryside. You’ve probably seen Texas depicted in many Hollywood movies – Westerns like “True Grit,” “Django Unchained” or “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly.” It’s not all about cowboys in Texas, though – at least not in the 21st century. Today it’s more about delicious food (steaks and barbecue), hip music (Austin is the Mecca of indie rock), and contact sports (football is king). For international students, it’s also the third most popular study abroad destination in the U.S. Among all the Texas universities, there are plenty of world-famous ones, including both public and private schools. The University of Texas System is one of the largest public university systems in the U.S. Rice University has been called Harvard of the South. You don’t want to miss out on the best part of the Wild West.

Geographically, Texas lies on the southern border across from Mexico. It ranks second in both population and size among all U.S. states. Houston is the largest city in Texas and the fourth-largest in the U.S., while San Antonio is the second largest in the state and the seventh largest nationally. Sports are very popular in Texas. All three professional basketball teams in Texas – the San Antonio Spurs, the Houston Rockets, and the Dallas Mavericks – have won championships.

In 2014, Texas hosted 64,277 international students, the third most in the U.S. The state’s international student population has been stable in recent years.

Among all Texas colleges and universities, the University of Texas at Dallas campus enrolled the most of international students last year with 6,296. UT Dallas is a public research university in the University of Texas System. The University of Texas at Austin, the flagship member of the University of Texas System, is recognized as one the best public universities in the U.S. Many of its majors, such as engineering, education and media, are among the top ranked in the country.

Chinese students make up 19 percent of the state’s international student population. Organizations like the Chinese Students and Scholars Society at the University of Texas at Austin hold all kinds of cultural, academic and social events to introduce Chinese culture to the student body, and give Chinese students a sense of home away from home.

If you are looking for a place that can give you a good balance between life and study, head for the Wild West!

Chart data: Institute of International Education (2014), Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange.

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