Some Department of Homeland Security officials have been speaking about a possible proposal affecting international students studying in the U.S. This potential proposal would require students to reapply yearly for
permission to remain in the U.S. for school. Such a proposal could impact over 1 million international students who choose to attend universities and colleges
in the U.S. However, it is worth noting that any changes in regulations could take at least 18 months to take effect. Recently, the Trump Administration has pushed for stricter vetting processes in an attempt to strengthen national security, which is seen by the travel ban for some coming from six Muslim-majority nations. Additionally, the DHS expressed concern about the openness of student visas since about 2.8% overstayed visas in 2016.
However, the Institute of International Education (IIE), a non-profit based in New York found the following about international student attendance in the U.S.:
- International students contribute billions of dollars to the economy; in 2015, they contributed over $35B to the U.S. economy.
- 5% of students who attend universities and colleges in the U.S. are international students.
- International students contribute to school’s budgets by paying full tuition.
- The 1.4 billion international students in the U.S. are made up of 77% Asian students, predominantly Chinese (362, 368 students), Indian (206,698 students), South Korean (71,204 students), and Saudi Arabian (55,806 students).
- International student attendance is more concentrated in California (with over 200,000 students), New York, Texas, Massachusetts, and Illinois, with New York University and University of Southern California having the largest numbers of international students.
- Almost 50% of international students, and 84% from India, are studying STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, or mathematics).