Large Research Institutions Hit Hardest by Decline in International Enrollment

Many U.S. students select colleges with a high enrollment of international students in the hopes of experiencing global cultures and viewpoints. On top of cultural contributions, international students accounted for over 1 million of America’s higher education students and spent $41 billion in the US economy in 2018-2019. In the last weeks, the United States government has passed aggressive policies threatening to refuse visas and even deport international students in a move that will likely discourage international students from studying here now and in future years. To understand the contribution of international students to individual college campuses, we’ve included our graph below. The institutions that will be most impacted are large research universities like NYU, USC, and Northeastern, while small liberal arts colleges Smith, Wesleyan, Bryn Mawr, and Macalester will also be affected. It is possible that this decline in international applicants will increase the 2021 admission rate inside the country as colleges struggle to meet enrollment needs during the pandemic and given its economic impact.  

Colleges with the Highest Proportion of International Students 2018-2019

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