In the United States, international students account for almost a quarter of the student population. They bring a variety of global perspectives to US classrooms. Their presence contributes to economic growth and innovation. However, they face a number of challenges as they adjust to a new culture. These include language and cultural barriers, financial pressures, and personal independence.
While a large part of their success lies in their ability to assimilate into the academic environment, relationships with faculty are also important. These relationships help to bridge the cultural gap and allow for a more productive educational experience.
As part of the Bologna Process, a unified system of higher education was established in Europe. Today, many universities worldwide offer pathway programs to support and recruit international students. This means that international students will have additional assistance in their academic preparation.
The OECD and UIS convention define an international student as someone who studies outside of their home country. For the OECD, this means that the student must be a citizen of the host country. It is important to note that this definition is not a strict definition, as international students may not have travelled across a border to study.
Despite this definition, some institutions have found that they need to spend more on marketing to attract international students. Others are beginning to look more holistically at the entire international student experience.
According to the Open Doors report, 16 percent of international students engage in post-completion work experience. Some employers are willing to pay international students for their skills, and this helps to improve the economy.