Friday, July 31, 2015

Where Are International Students in the U.S. Coming From?

By Jordan Friedman
World Education Services
Infographic by Brittney Bodden

Where are international students in the U.S. coming from? Let’s break it down.

According to numbers from the Institute for International Education, of the roughly 886,000 international students in the U.S. in 2014, more than 30 percent came from China. The country has been the top sender of students to the U.S. for the past five years. China also previously held this position in the late 1990s and early 2000s.

The mobility of Chinese students to the U.S. has increased drastically in recent years. A 2012 WES report attributes this rise to the growing number of Chinese high school students whose families can afford to send them to the U.S. for college, as well as the “unmet demand for high-quality education at home.”

Following China in numbers is India, which before 2010 was the leading place of origin for international students for eight years. In 2013-2014, Indian students made up about 12 percent of the total international student population in the U.S., seeing a rise of about 6 percent from the year before. Still, prior to 2014, the country had experienced three years of dropping numbers. The 2012 WES report attributed this drop to the residual effects of the U.S. economic recession.

Despite declines in the past few years, South Korea sends the third highest number of students to the U.S. The decreasing numbers are likely the result of low fertility rates and new opportunities for students to pursue university degrees in South Korea, according to a 2013 WES report. But South Korea remains a promising country from which to recruit students, particularly undergraduates.

Want to know more about the top senders of international students to the U.S.? Check out our chart below.

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