Will India now have new opportunities to curb the allure of foreign education?
By: Priyanka Saurabh
Recently, due to Covid-19, different countries around the world have changed the rules for students from other countries in their educational institutions, which has put students from all over the world under stress. In a country like the US, there is talk of issuing visas to only a few students, under which the online courses available there, will not get a student visa.
On the other hand, countries like Britain have made it clear that if you are doing a Ph.D. for undergraduate and PG courses there, you can only get a visa to stay there for 2 years. And the same thing is happening in different countries, whether it is other countries in Europe or China, there has also been an impact on the studies of students due to Covid. What effect will this change of rules have on Indian students, whether the enthusiasm for foreign education will continue even in this age of COVID, and whether there are better options for students at the moment and what will happen to their future education, etc?
According to a new U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement directive to continue higher education, students attending university programs who rely entirely on online courses can no longer stay in the U.S., F-1 and relates to those students on M-1 visas. F-1 visa holders are pursuing undergraduate, postgraduate, or doctoral studies in tertiary education institutions. M-1 holders are those who are engaged in vocational courses.
F-1 and M-1 students may not load a fully online course to attend schools that operate entirely online and must attend a classroom program to reside in the United States. College and university students who were only pursuing online models would have to leave the country or find another way to stay in such a situation. Richard Haas, chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations, tweeted about the U.S. government’s decision, saying that allowing foreign students to attend U.S. universities is considered a good way to make non-Americans pro-American. But now we are taking them away from us and making them our opponents.
Allegedly, international students make up 5.5 percent of the U.S. higher education population, which is just under 1.1 million. Will this order affect Indian students too? The USA has a large number of students from India and China. According to the data, in the year 2018-19, about 1 million international students arrived in the USA, out of which about three lakh 72 thousand students were from China and about two lakh students were from India. According to 2017-2018 figures, Indian student Cohort is second only to Chinese, representing 18 percent of all foreign students in the United States.
Not only that but now U.S. President Donald Trump has also ordered the suspension of H1-B highly skilled worker visas by the end of the year. Most of these visas go to Indian citizens every year. Under the new rules, international students will be forced to leave the United States. Under the new guidelines, if their schools offer these online classes entirely, transfer them to another college. According to the order, international students must take at least some classes individually.
No longer will new visas be issued to students in schools or programs that are entirely online. And even in-person and online courses in colleges, international students will be barred from taking all their classes online. This creates a necessary dilemma for thousands of international students who are studying in the U.S. Was stuck in. But the U.S. Colleges were already upset by this fall, and now losing international students could be disastrous for them there. Many colleges and universities there rely on tuition revenue from international students, who usually pay higher tuition rates.
Last year, U.S. universities the policy, which attracted about 1.1 million students from abroad, will no longer be possible. This policy is cruel to international students and detrimental to America’s scientific leadership. There is a time difference between most countries and the USA. Many countries have problems with the Internet. The problem of the power outage is also big. At the same time, the epidemic is causing stress everywhere. Returning home in such a situation will be very detrimental to foreign students. Leaving their friends, family, and country to come here to study so that they can fulfill their dreams, was already no less difficult. This decision of ICE has broken foreign students. It can ruin all their hard work to get here with such difficulty.
Many in the United States also believe that the Trump administration, taking advantage of the epidemic with this new decision, wants to move toward its goal of restricting the entry of foreigners into the United States. The coronavirus has killed more than 130,000 people in the United States so far, and the number of cases is rising again in many states in the United States. That is, American citizens have more rights than citizens of any other country in the opportunities available in the United States.
This means that India will now at least have new opportunities to curb the allure of foreign education. This is the opportunity when India can adopt every recipe to become a knowledge power and prove that its interference in higher education can also challenge the world’s renowned educational institutions. (The writer is a Research Scholar in Political Science, Delhi University, a poetess, independent journalists and columnists, radio and TV panelists)