Japanese undergraduate enrollment in US universities has fallen 52% since 2000; graduate enrollment has dropped 27%.
It is a steep, sustained and potentially harmful decline for an export-dependent nation that is losing global market share to China, whose students are stampeding (perhaps not the correct word) into American schools.
Total enrollment from China is up 164% in the past decade. South Korea has about 76 million fewer people than Japan, but it now sends 2.5 times as many students to US colleges.
Harvard President Drew Gilpin Faust said that when she visited Japan last month, she met with students and educators who told her that Japanese young people are inward-looking, preferring the comfort of home to venturing overseas. Seattle Times also reported they told her in their view the economic advantage of attending a US college as questionable.