Opinion

There Has Never Been A Better Time To Study Abroad

Indian students are studying abroad in record numbers. In fact, they’ve recently overtaken
Chinese students as the largest foreign nationality arriving on Canadian campuses, and they
also continue to pour into universities in the United States and other countries. There’s a reason
for this. There has never been a better time for Indian students to study abroad – especially in
North America.

Let’s start with the schools themselves. Universities are bending over backwards to recruit
international students, both to promote diversity and to fill empty seats on campus. Many have
recruiting offices in large Indian cities, and attend university fairs to introduce themselves to
local students. Universities want more Indian students in their classrooms.

In the United States, changes to immigration policy strongly favour Indian students, despite some
rhetoric from the White House. The H1-B lottery (the process by which most foreign nationals
get U.S. work authorization) has changed to favour those who studied in the U.S. – particularly
those who hold graduate degrees from American institutions. This means that Indian students
who pursue a master’s degree are more likely than ever to receive work authorization through
the H1-B lottery.

Canadian immigration is also famously welcoming to Indian students. A 3-year post-graduation
a work permit allows its graduates from Canadian universities to work anywhere in Canada, in any
field, and even if they don’t currently have a job offer on hand. The pathway towards permanent
residency and citizenship is also extremely clear, which benefits students who decide that they
may eventually decide to settle abroad.

Finally, paying for foreign education has never been easier. Universities may offer scholarship
and loan packages themselves, or promote third-party options from trusted partners. Schools
increasingly believe that providing financing options is a competitive advantage, and work hard
to ensure that the most-qualified students have no trouble paying for their education.

The decision to leave home and pursue an overseas education is not easy. It requires deep
reflection and consideration of the student’s life journey and career aspirations. But for students
who decide to take the plunge, there’s no time like the present.

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Sasha Ramani

Sasha Ramani is the Head of Canada and Corporate Strategy at MPOWER Financing a provider of scholarships and loans to international students pursuing university in Canada and the United States. He studied at the University of Waterloo (Canada), Wilfrid Laurier University (Canada), and Harvard University (USA)

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