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Ohio: India topples Saudi Arabia, China as the top country for students in Kent State University

New Delhi: Students from India are the highest in numbers across most universities in the US now and the same is true for international students enrolling as undergraduate and graduate students at Kent State University (KSU), Ohio, USA. The reason for this increase is twofold. Traditionally it was students from Saudi Arabia and China that contributed to the largest share of students in the US. The outbreak of the pandemic and the political standoff between the US and China has led to the decline of students from China to the US. Saudi Arabia has also drastically reduced its scholarship schemes so there is a dip in the number of students from there.

‘Out of the 1650 international students, 470 are from India. Which means 1/4th of the international students are from India. Between the fall of 2022 and Spring of 2023 we will be receiving 300 students from India,’ said Marcello Fantoni, vice president, Global Education at KSU.

Encouraged by the response that KSU has had from India ever since they opened an office in India, they are planning to open two more offices – one in Mumbai and another in Hyderabad. South India contributes to the largest influx in the number of Indian students.

“India is important for us as students from here are willing learners. They have a strong academic and cultural background which adds value to their ability to grasp. India today represents so much of the world,’’ says Dr. Melody Tankersly, Provost and Senior Vice President of KSU.

Dr. Melody also teaches students with emotional and behavioral issues. Mental health issues are a major challenge these days and addressing and rectifying their concerns goes a long way toward making them mature adults.

“Social media is increasing anxiety and depression amongst the youth who tend to believe whatever they read on it. Spending too much time on the phone and scanning through what others put on their timelines is creating a challenge. But the good part is that most of the students are acknowledging it and willing to change it,’’ Dr. Melody adds.

KSU is looking at collaborations with Indian universities/schools to further expand its base. Student and faculty exchange programs have been happening for a while now. KSU has been recognized as the most internationalized campus in the US. Their classes have a global perspective.

“Kent State’s global reach has been expansive, with educational centers in Florence, Italy, and Curitiba, Brazil, along with boasting more than 200 education-abroad programs,’’ says Jyotsna Misra, Head of India operations.

Interestingly, despite the pandemic, the inflow of Indian students to KSU continued as earlier.

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