Bombay : After two years of massive disruption to their plans, Indian students are expected to start flocking to overseas universities again in even larger numbers this year, helped by the relaxation of visa rules and mobility restrictions.
Edtech companies estimate that the number of Indian students going to the US, UK, Australia, Canada and Europe will not only return to pre-pandemic figures but, in some cases, will even increase several times.
The biggest beneficiary could be the UK, which is expected to see an almost 600% increase in the number of Indian students this year compared to 2019. There is also an increase in visa applications and student loans for l Australia, now that the borders have opened.
University admissions platform LeverageEdu expects a total of 250,000 students to travel to the UK this year, up from around 36,000 in 2019. According to the company, the UK continued to welcome students from India during the pandemic, with around 100,000 in 2021. and 75,000 in 2020.
“According to government data, we have seen international student inflows to Canada and the United States drop significantly in 2020 with the pandemic. However, interest has rebounded in Canada, and early signs suggest a similar rebound in the United States as well,” said Karunn Kandoi, Managing Director and Head of India Operations at edtech platform ApplyBoard.
“The UK has been able to weather the pandemic-related decline according to the data we have access to at this time.”
According to ApplyBoard, the number of Indian students in the UK increased by 52% between the 2019/20 and 2020/21 academic years. LeverageEdu estimates that 150,000 students will travel to Australia, up from 180,000 in 2019 and 150,000 in 2018.
Changes to work and study permits played a role.
ApplyBoard cites the Canada Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP), which gives students who graduate from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) the opportunity to stay and work in Canada after graduation.
“There has been a surge of interest in the program from Indian students over the past five years, culminating in over 70,000 PGWPP approvals in 2020,” he added.
Business management and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) programs are the most sought-after courses for students studying abroad. Easy loans, reduced collateral, and hybrid programs where students can study online and offline have made earning a foreign degree more attractive.
“The volume of students going to the US and Canada will increase 3 times,” said Ashwini Kumar, Managing Director (India) and Vice President of fintech company MPOWER Financing. year.