Signed: International Student
Dear Student: From Harvard and Yale to Indiana and Purdue, almost all U. S. colleges have increased the number of international students they have admitted in the past several years. There are no signs of any change in this trend in the near future so I suggest you consider applying to several colleges in America.
When I say this to international students they are surprised. The fact is that campus life in American colleges has been greatly enriched by the presence of international students. Harvard, for example, admitted a record 12 percent of its freshmen class this fall from countries outside the United Stated.
Do not limit yourself to only well-known colleges and universities. Part of the strength of American higher education is that it is possible to get a good education in every state and not just at the most elite and well-known institutions.
For example, my clients this year were admitted to more than 70 colleges and universities ranging from Amherst and Yale to the University of California Berkley and Notre Dame. A number of them were admitted to smaller colleges such as Valparaiso University, Wake Forest, Richmond, Pace and Carlton. In fact, many of the lesser known colleges tend to attract international students because they want to add to the intellectual diversity of their campus community.
International students tend to have higher test scores than regular applicants and that helps boost colleges in the rankings. In addition, they usually pay full tuition that helps offset costs for domestic admits.
Not all international students pay full tuition, however, and lacking financial means should not be a barrier to applying to an American college. There is financial aid available to international students from United World Colleges. UWC’s National Committees in nearly 130 countries award two-year scholarships to top students who want to study in the States.
Many international students already in college are not aware that they can transfer to the United States for academic reasons. Because many foreign colleges do not offer the broad range of majors and classes that are available in this country, students may need to transfer to complete their studies.
If you are an international student and want to transfer, be prepared to face considerable hurdles. You must take the SAT or ACT and that can be difficult to do in many foreign countries.
Don’t expect your counselors to know much more than you do about applying to colleges in the states. You will need to get teacher recommendations and learn about early decision applications and interview locations just like American students.
The best place to start is the Internet. Spend some time looking at the requirements for the schools of your choice.
College admissions standards vary, and there is no single qualification that will get you in to every school. In the end, if you do your research and prepare your application materials carefully, I am confident you will find a way to come to America for your education.