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US, UK immigration curbs spook students planning to study abroad

Engineering and management institutes in India reporting a 20-35 per cent rise in applications

Vinay Umarji  |  Ahmedabad 

H-1B visa row: Applications up 20-35 per cent in domestic campuses

With the the US, and tightening measures to curb immigration, Indian institutes have seen a spurt in applications this year.

Engineering and management institutes are reporting a 20-35 per cent rise in applications this admission season.

“Applications have risen this year, not just at our institute but at other institutes as well. The average increase has been 15-20 per cent and this is the highest increase in the last three years,” said H Chaturvedi, director, BIMTECH.

NMIMS, which is in the process of receiving applications for its entrance test NPAT, too, has seen numbers rise by 30-35 per cent. According to Rajan Saxena, vice-chancellor of NMIMS, as against 17,000 applications last year, this year is expected to close at 22,000-23,000.

However, education consultants said since immigration curbs were not driven by foreign universities, these were continuing to attract international students, including those from India.

“Universities in the US, and are continuing to encourage international students to apply. Furthermore, they are incorporating additional measures to secure employment for their students, including tapping into international alumni and deploying members in their career centres to support employment for international students,” said Vibha Kagzi, founder and chief education officer, Reachivy.com.

According to management institutes, job losses in the technology industry were forcing software engineers to seek degrees in management.

“Parents and students are now increasingly apprehensive about going abroad. Even if they do, they prefer safer markets like Canada and Ireland,” said Chaturvedi.

He added the younger generation in the technology industry was realising that mere coding would not work in the future and hence was exploring other programmes to diversify its skills.

“There are new programmes being introduced that are attracting students. Coding has now become a low-skill job and students are looking at other streams, including design,” said Saxena.

“Indian students who want to pursue an overseas education are now tapping new locales like Singapore, Canada and South Korea, which offer competitive educational facilities and easy availability of visas along with other benefits like work permits,” Kagzi said.

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