Chinese Applications to U.S. Schools Skyrocket

Judy Hartnett's picture
Thursday, January 12, 2012

 China sends more of its students to America than any other country. During the 2010-11 academic year, 157,588 Chinese students were studying in the U.S. – an increase of 23 percent from the previous year, according to the Institute of International Education.BEIJING – Wenzy Duan dreams about becoming a delegate to the United Nations. “I know this [ambition] is pretty high,” said the 17-year old Beijing native. “But I think I can give it a shot.”

To prepare, Duan wants to study international relations at an American college – someplace like the University of Washington. “I hear [it] is good at social science," she said.

The University of Washington is one of approximately 10 U.S. universities Duan plans to apply to in the coming year with the help of an education consultant she hired last summer. “I know that the scores is not the only thing that the university will consider whether you can get in or not,” said the high school senior.

Duan is not alone. Today, China sends more of its students to America than any other country. During the 2010-11 academic year, 157,588 Chinese students were studying in the U.S. – an increase of 23 percent from the previous year, according to the Institute of International Education.

The growing market of Chinese students wanting to go to the U.S. has created various cottage industries in China and the U.S. – among them are education consultants who help students navigate the maze of college applications and "brokers" representing American universities who seek student candidates paying full tuition. But it's also fueled anxiety among American students and their parents about increased competition from abroad.

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