WENR, April 2016: Americas

U of California turning to nonresidents for revenue

In an effort to cushion the blow of state funding cuts, University of California campuses have been admitting less-qualified out-of-state students at the expense of more academically qualified residents. U.C. officials say that out-of-state students, who pay full tuition, are a necessity at a time of severe budget shortfalls. The shift in admissions policy has angered applicants, parents, and politicians alike; however, until funding fully rebounds, the trend is expected to continue. Between 2010 and 2015, the number of nonresidents at U.C. schools grew by 82 percent; during the same period, the university relaxed the high admissions standards that had historically been required for nonresidents.

Times Higher Education
March 30, 2016


More American students looking abroad for education

More Americans are going abroad for college. The years between 2000 and 2014 saw a 72 percent increase in the numbers of U.S. students studying outside the country. A large majority choose European schools. Cost may be the reason. Tuition can be shockingly cheap for students in the U.S., where the average tuition for private universities of $32,405 a year. In fact, forty higher education institutions in Europe teach in English and offer bachelor’s degrees completely free of charge.Hidden costs abound, of course. Student housing, for instance, isn’t controlled by universities and rent can vary greatly. Travel expenses can be cheap, and many students worry that a degree from abroad might be less valuable when looking for employment back home.

March 22, 2016

Interest in English language learning on the rise in Mexico

Citing a strong desire to increase employability, nearly 24 million Mexicans, or about 20 percent of the population, are enrolled in an English language learning program.

The rising popularity of these programs can be in part attributed to a national initiative launched in 2009 with the aim of providing English education to public school students. Mobility among outwardly bound Mexican students seeking to learn English in order to improve their career prospects is also on the rise.  Between 2010 and 2013, the number of students studying English abroad rose 35 percent. Most go to Canada and the U.S. The highest reported barrier to English language training was cost, with 50 percent of respondents to a British Council survey claiming that “it is too expensive.”.

ICEF Monitor
March 18, 2016

Canada eases requirements for permanent citizenship

The recently elected liberal government in Canada has outlined plans to help ease the path to citizenship for international students. With the new Bill C-6, students will be able to count 50 percent of their time enrolled in school towards the physical residency requirement. To be eligible, international students must live in Canada for three of the previous five years. A previous iteration of the bill,  enacted by the conservative government, did not allow international students did not allow students to count their time studying at HE institutions towards the physical residency requirements. Students were also required to live in Canada for four of the previous six years.

John McCallum, minister of immigration, refugees and citizenship, views the earlier iteration of the bill as punitive  McCallum calls international students “the perfect candidates to become Canadian citizens” and says the country is “seeking them out — as are other countries around the world.” Fifty-one percent of international students in Canada say they plan to apply for permanent residence.

The PIE News
March 4, 2016

Posted in Americas, Regional News Summaries