The Open Doors Report is published annually by the Institute of International Education (IIE) with support from the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. It gives a clear picture on the annual trends in the preferences of Indian and other international students while choosing their overseas education destination. It has become a useful tool for students planning to pursue their education abroad.

The United States remains the most preferred destination for education abroad as they thrive on research and education. Indian alumni who have successfully completed their education from U.S. universities often flaunt the vision of a shared future developed through practical knowledge, diversity, overall self-development and an independent way of living. Today, the world is interconnected and demands pupils who embrace diversity and multiculturalism.

Why study in the US?

The benefits of studying at a University in the U.S. include – the credibility of the various programs it offers, great visa extension in the form of an OPT (Optional Practical Training) and academic durations that assures one of an attractive ROI (Return on Investment). The USA has a lot to offer with more than 4700 universities that are autonomous in nature. Apart from that there are many public universities, private universities and community colleges.

New York University, University of Southern California, and North-eastern University-Boston were amongst the favourite Universities for international students arriving in the U.S. this year. The varied Government scholarships, merit-based funding schemes and holistic approach to admission processes make the U.S. a sought-after country for career decisions.

Indian Students in the US

In 2016-17 new international enrolments at US Universities stood at 2,90,836 students. Of this total, 1,86,267 were Indian students. As a nation, India is unable to meet the increasing demands of quality higher education. Hence, Indian students opt for prestigious universities in the U.S. Engineering, Business and Management, Math and Computer Science topped the list of preferred program choices in the U.S. in 2016-2017. However, Health professions and communications and journalism remained at the bottom of the list. A good quality of life, internship opportunities, access to top companies, ability to improve networking skills, strong placement histories of universities, assistantships and flexibility in program options are strong reasons for students to opt for education in the U.S.

Indian vs US Education Systems

The Indian educational system focuses on theoretical learning based purely on scores and academics. A student who has a great overall personality with appropriate co-curricular work and a broad extracurricular profile often suffers at the cost of this rigid admission structure. Thus, the U.S., accepting the merits of a holistic profile is the preferred destination for these students. Moreover, an education system that helps students to become well-rounded personalities seems to be the preferred option for many students.

An early exposure to an international educational program strengthens skill sets and sharpens learning curves. 1, 15,841 new students opted for early education at U.S. universities in the form of under graduate programs in 2016-17. Under-graduate students in the United States of America, can choose a major as well as a minor area of study. This allows them a chance of not losing out on a smaller area of interest that they may have. For example, someone wanting to study engineering without losing out on his passion for music can do a major in engineering with a minor in music. Such options are great learning opportunities that also contribute to high satisfaction levels among students. Co-operative programs also attract a lot of international students. They include 4 years of study with one year of compulsory work.

Thus, an overall picture reveals that USA continues to be the most preferred destination for further studies. You may get in touch with our counsellors to discuss and plan your move to the US.