Published: 17th November 2020
USA has 11 million COVID cases but 46% of Indian students still want to study there, finds study
A large section of the students has decided to wait and apply the next year as they do not want to spend the same amount of money on an online or virtual course
The United States of America might have more than 11 million cases of Coronavirus but Indian students are still keen to pursue their education in the USA, found a study by Chennai-based EdTech firm Galvanize Test Prep. The study found that 89.2 per cent of the students are still keen on studying abroad and 46 per cent of them want to go to the USA.
The Trump administration's power might have acted as a deterrent at some points for students applying abroad but not the COVID-19 scenario, said Pavithra Srinivasan, Founder of Galvanize. "It might seem logical that the students would want to opt for another country given the high COVID-19 cases in the USA but that has not been the case. They have been eager to go to the USA to follow their dreams. The trend only suggests that it will increase," she said. "Out of the aspirants we interviewed, 64 per cent were students while 36 per cent were working professionals with a few years of experience. But there was no discernable distinction when it came to their attitude towards studying abroad," she added.
But a large section of the students has decided to wait and apply the next year as they do not want to spend the same amount of money on an online or virtual course. "But there have been some interesting developments as well. The Illinois Institute of Technology offered a 70 per cent drop in their fees if the Indian students chose an online course. Now that's a significant drop that students can consider," said Pavithra.
The Indian government has been talking about inviting the big gun universities to set up base in India but will that change the trend of students going abroad? "Even though the government has been talking about it, I don't think too many people are aware of the extent of the plans of the government. So the fact has not entered the decision making of the individuals. Unless there is a big university that actually comes and sets up shop here I don't think the kids are going to look at that. This is a long-term plan," said Ram Srinivasan, CEO of Galvanize. "The UAE, which has a lot of foreign university campuses, can be taken as an example. While there are satellite campuses there, the main campus is somewhere else and they have the best faculty. Many of the students going abroad are going for the international experience which they won't get in India. There will be a shift but it doesn't solve the issues that students want to go abroad for better jobs and better education," he added.
The study of more than 1,000 aspirants found that 72 per cent of them want to go abroad for better job opportunities if they graduate from a good university there, while 20 per cent wanted to study abroad because the varieties provide a plethora of options and 8 per cent was keen on settling abroad.