The Brexit vote and reports that the new UK Prime Minister Theresa May is set to make student visa norms even more strict, it is no surprise that Indian students are looking at other options when planning overseas education. “The decline in work opportunities along with an uncertain economy and stricter immigration policies will make the UK less attractive for many Indian students,” says Rahul Choudaha, cofounder of interEDGE, a US-based firm focused on student education.
Meanwhile, in the US, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s anti-immigration rhetoric is also spooking Indian students, although that threat isn’t as real as in the UK for two reasons: one, Trump’s angst may be more against workers — particularly low-skilled ones — than students. And, two, Trump may, of course, not even be elected president, if recent (post-convention) opinion polls are to be believed. Yet, the uncertainty till America gets a new president may have resulted in Indian..
“If you consider the findings from the last two years of the Indian Students Mobility Report, which we publish, it is clear that the UK is already on a downward curve,” says Maria Mathai,
“But what’s interesting is that after North America, Australia and New Zealand have emerged as preferred destinations for Indians,” she adds. The outbound numbers for Indian students have grown for all countries except the UK and last year a record 3.6 lakh students went abroad for higher studies. The growth in number of students headed to destinations like Germany and China proves that Indians are no longer looking for comfort-driven options but are willing to go to countries where learning .