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July 2017

‘Staying silent now is a really bad idea’

TheWhiteHouse TrumpTheresaweb

International students are ‘upset’ about US and UK immigration policies and could head elsewhere if universities fail to show their friendly side, a survey suggests.

The findings reveal that ‘unwelcoming’ foreign policies are changing students’ perceptions – and possibly decisions – even when they don’t directly affect them.

‘International students are registering their distaste,’ said Ben Waxman, chief executive of Intead, one of the two student-marketing companies behind the research.

‘They are asking, “Why are you closing your doors to internationalisation?”’

The survey, conducted in February by Intead and FPPEDU Media and presented last month, received responses from over 57,400 prospective international students.

Many of those in non-EU countries said they were less likely to study in the UK because of Brexit. This included 43 per cent of respondents from India and 39 per cent from Nigeria – the fifth- and sixth-largest source markets for the UK higher education sector.

As for the US, the election of Donald Trump seems to be making some students think twice. About 60 per cent of respondents from Brazil said they were less likely to study in the US – up from 49 per cent when the same question was asked before the 2016 presidential elections.

But the percentage of Mexican students who said they would not study in the US has actually fallen, from 80 per cent in 2016 to 61 per cent this year.

Similar percentages of all students surveyed said they would be less likely to choose the US as a study destination due to the US government’s travel policies. A total of 59 per cent of UK students said they would be less likely to study in the US for this reason.

The picture is quite grim, but how likely are students to follow through?

Trump numbers

 International students are ‘upset’ about US and UK immigration policies and could head elsewhere if universities fail to show their friendly side, a survey suggests.

The findings reveal that ‘unwelcoming’ foreign policies are changing students’ perceptions – and possibly decisions – even when they don’t directly affect them.

‘International students are registering their distaste,’ said Ben Waxman, chief executive of Intead, one of the two student-marketing companies behind the research.

‘They are asking, “Why are you closing your doors to internationalisation?”’

The survey, conducted in February by Intead and FPPEDU Media and presented last month, received responses from over 57,400 prospective international students.

Many of those in non-EU countries said they were less likely to study in the UK because of Brexit. This included 43 per cent of respondents from India and 39 per cent from Nigeria – the fifth- and sixth-largest source markets for the UK higher education sector.

As for the US, the election of Donald Trump seems to be making some students think twice. About 60 per cent of respondents from Brazil said they were less likely to study in the US – up from 49 per cent when the same question was asked before the 2016 presidential elections.

But the percentage of Mexican students who said they would not study in the US has actually fallen, from 80 per cent in 2016 to 61 per cent this year.

Similar percentages of all students surveyed said they would be less likely to choose the US as a study destination due to the US government’s travel policies. A total of 59 per cent of UK students said they would be less likely to study in the US for this reason.

The picture is quite grim, but how likely are students to follow through?

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