[photopress:spellings_300.jpg,full,alignright]Rebecca Knight in the Financial Times writes of worries in the United States that it is in danger of losing its status as the first choice destination of international students.
A report, by the American Council on Education, an industry research group, said that while the country was still the most popular destination, other countries were outpacing US growth in that market.
Margaret Spellings, US education secretary, said she was ‘very concerned’ about the report’s findings. In response to the problem, Ms Spellings has convened a delegation of a dozen US college and university presidents. Margaret Spellings and Dina Habib Powell, assistant secretary of state, will lead the first delegation to Japan, South Korea and China in November.
Margaret Spellings said, ‘We’ve come to a point in time in this flattened world where we have a lot to learn from each other.’
Some observers claim the slow growth in numbers of students coming to the US for education is due to the perception that the US is unwelcoming to international students. In the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks, the US State Department imposed tougher standards on foreign students seeking visas to study in the US, which made visa processing times slow to a crawl.
Margaret Spellings said, ‘Generally speaking, American schools are very welcoming, but we can always do better.’ Well, yes. But everyone is ducking the most important factor. It is more expensive to get a good degree in the United States than anywhere in the world. If you want an MBA from a good university it would be handy to have $US100,000 available.
This has not been stressed in the publicity about the trip.
Source: Financial Times