Tuesday, October 11, 2011

India's half-hearted welcome for foreign universities

U.S. universities may not be setting up shop in India yet, but they’re already attracting Indian students in droves – mostly graduate students. Last year, 105,000 Indian students were studying abroad in the U.S., the second most behind China’s 127,000.

At a college fair Monday organized at New Delhi’s Shangri-La Hotel as part of the trade mission, 21 U.S. universities were recruiting and the high enthusiasm of Indian students to go abroad was on display.

Elenora Haag, who was representing the University of Illinois at Springfield, said the school has already had surprising interest from Indians with almost no marketing – of its 200 foreign students (out of a student population of 5,000) 80% are Indians. “It’s entirely by word of mouth,” she said.

But she added that the school is hoping to diversify the kind of Indians it attracts. All its Indians now are computer science graduate students and, interestingly, all are from Hyderabad. “I guess some of them came and told their friends back home in Hyderabad to come,” Ms. Haag says.

Haag's comments were featured in an October 11, 2011, article in The Wall Street Journal.

Read the article online