Curious about international application numbers for the Class of 2021 — this year’s group of rising college freshmen? A number of reporters have been asking us over the course of the last several months if we anticipate that international applicants will be less inclined to apply to American universities because of the rhetoric and proposed immigration bans of the current presidential administration. When we hear this line of questioning, our first instinct is to clarify — are the reporters referring to all American universities or only the highly selective schools? After all, highly selective American schools like the eight Ivy League colleges, Stanford, Duke, MIT, Northwestern, Caltech, Johns Hopkins, etc. are but a small percentage of the hundreds upon hundreds of American universities. Are these reporters referring to the likes of Stanford or are they referring to the schools most of us have never heard of that you might see when you pass their exit on the freeway. Hi DeVry! Sorry, DeVry, but we couldn’t resist.
Based on the data, international applicants to the Class of 2021 did not show any discernible hesitation to apply to America’s most selective universities.
As we expressed in the early days of the Trump presidency, we did not — nor do we now — anticipate a drop in international application numbers to America’s highly selective universities. We did anticipate a drop in international applications to America’s not-so-selective universities and we anticipate this drop will continue over the course of the presidential term. And indeed the numbers have supported our forecasts. Just check out our compiled 2021 Ivy League Admissions Statistics and read through the class profiles at the Ancient Eight institutions. International applicants did not hesitate to apply this year to Ivy League schools. But was that the case across the board for American universities? No. A “US News & World Report” article by Lauren Camera on international application figures cites that “nearly 40 percent of responding U.S. institutions reported a drop in international student applications, particularly from students in the Middle East.” The Middle East. No surprise there.
The fact is that which is true in the Ivy League as well as at other highly selective American universities does not hold true at many of those universities you know only from your drives down America’s freeways. You know those schools we’re referring to — think about it! But do our readers foresee this trend continuing? Will our nation’s most elite universities continue to attract international applicants irrespective of who occupies our nation’s highest office? And will international applications to America’s not-so-selective schools continue to dwindle? Let us know your thoughts on the subject of international application numbers by posting a comment below. We look forward to hearing from you.
While you’re here, check out what we’ve got to say about how international students on America’s college campuses are good for America.