Indian students' intake in US colleges up in 2018 US govt

NEW DELHI: Only Indian students’ intake in the United States’ colleges increased in 2018 against 2017 while other top four countries — China, South Korea, Saudi Arabia and Japan — reported decrease during the same period, said the US Immigration and Custom Enforcement on Wednesday.

China, India, South Korea, Saudi Arabia and Japan send maximum students to the US top colleges. The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP,) part of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations, released an annual report on non-immigrant student trends on Wednesday.

The report highlights that China, India and the South Korea sent the largest number of students in both calendar year 2017 and 2018. The other two countries are Saudi Arabia and Japan. In 2018, China had sent 478,732 students, India 251,290 , South Korea 88,867, Saudi Arabia 61,205 and Japan 39,396 students. It stated that in 2017, China had sent 478,879 students, India 247,133 , South Korea 95,270 , Saudi Arabia 72,084 and Japan 41,534 students.

“Of these countries, only the number of students from India increased from 2017 to 2018 (+4,157). The number of students from China (-147) and Republic of Korea (South Korea) decreased (-6,403), Saudi Arabia (-10879) and Japan (-2134) over the same period,” the report said.

The report also stated that it is the Indian students who apply in maximum numbers for Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) optional practical training (OPT) extension. The non-immigrant students with science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) degrees from Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP)-certified and accredited US colleges and universities apply for a 24-month STEM OPT extension.

In 2017, a total 49,368 students from Indian applied for STEM (OPT) while 21,753 students from China applied for the same. In 2018, Indian students applying for STEM (OPT) increased by almost 30 percent. A total 70,521 Indian students applied for STEM (OPT) and 25,843 Chinese students applied for the same.

The report highlights 2018 data from the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), a web-based system that includes information about nonimmigrant students, exchange visitors and their dependents while they are in the US.

The report notes there were 1.55 million active records for F-1 and M-1 nonimmigrant students in SEVIS during calendar year 2018, a 1.7 percent decrease from calendar year 2017, and there were 8,936 US schools certified by SEVP to enroll nonimmigrant students. IANS