Why Indian students are now choosing Australia and Canada as study abroad destinations over the U.S.
Australia and Canada continue to rise in popularity among Indian students as in-demand study abroad destinations. For decades, the U.S. has remained the top destination for Indian students who want to add a foreign degree to their curriculum vitae. However, the trend is slowly reversing due to multiple constraints such as strict visa requirements, depreciation of the Indian rupee, and growing intolerance towards the foreigners staying in the U.S. While more and more Indians are going to the U.S. to pursue higher studies, the growth rate has been declining at an alarming rate.
In fact, students have now turned their attention to other options, i.e. Australia and Canada. According to the statistics provided by Rod Hilton, the deputy high commissioner of Australia in India, approximately 68,000 Indian students went to the Land Down Under in 2017, a 14 percent increase than the previous year. And by February 2018, 60,062 Indian students made their journey to Australia in their quest for higher education. Apart from the main cities like Melbourne and Sydney, they are also inclining towards new regions including Adelaide, Gold Coast, Perth and Northern Territory.
Another HSBC report reveals that 46 percent of the Indian parents who are considering sending their children abroad to study prefer Australia. When it comes to Canada, this northern American country continues to be one of the most popular education destinations among Indian students. As per the Canadian High Comissioner of India, as many as 83,540 study permits were issued to Indian nationals in 2017. Especially, the number of students enrolled in the science and technology courses keeps increasing by the year. Several factors have worked in unison to lure Indian students to the shores of Australia and Canada. Whether it’s the stay-back opportunities or the wide array of interdisciplinary programmes offered by reputed universities, let’s find why these two countries have caught their fancy.
Here are five reasons why Indian students are increasingly choosing Australia and Canada as study abroad destinations over the U.S.:
1. Huge range of courses
Australia and Canada are home to some of the most distinguished educational institutes in the world. Equipped with world-class infrastructure and research facilities, the universities here offer a huge range of courses. From traditional STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) courses to management programmes, students are provided with numerous options to choose from depending upon their expertise and personal interest. Along with the mainstream courses, there has been a shift towards unconventional and specialized areas of study as well.
2. Post-study work permit
Indian students can apply for a post-study work permit in Australia and Canada, an opportunity that is unavailable in the majority of countries. Students who have studied for two years in Australia can apply for a post-study work visa and the process is quite simple. In Canada, students are eligible for a work permit for three years if they have finished their master’s degree from a Canadian university. The inflow of Indian students to Canada has further gone up after it introduced the SDS (Study Direct Stream) Programme last year.
3. Permanent residency
Many Indian students enjoy their stay in Australia and Canada so much that they decide to apply for Permanent Residency. The good news is that the road to Permanent Residency in these countries is not a long one. In Australia, foreign students just require a few qualifications to apply for the Permanent Residency programme. On the other hand, Canada’s newly reformed Express Entry programme has worked as a major determining factor for Indian students who are going overseas to study.
4. Safe environment
While there are some race incidents of racial crime, Australia and Canada are really safe when it comes to foreign students. Most of the cities here are cosmopolitan, with residents being very warm and welcoming to foreigners. The governments of these countries are open to all nationals and strongly foster cultural diversity.
Besides these factors, affordability is another major reason why Indians opt for studying in Australia and Canada. As compared to the U.S., the tuition fees and cost of living are relatively cheaper.