The Disappearing American Grad Student

The Disappearing American Grad Student

Even as at the undergraduate level, 80 percent of the students are United States residents, that number, The New York Times reports, falls below 20 percent mark at the undergraduate level in several universities (Editor’s note: the link could be paywalled). From the report: The Tandon School — a consolidation of N.Y.U.’s science, technology, engineering and math programs on its Brooklyn campus — is an extreme example of how scarce Americans are in graduate programs in STEM. Overall, these programs have the highest percentage of international students of any broad academic field. In the fall of 2015, about 55 percent of all graduate students in mathematics, computer sciences and engineering were from abroad, according to a survey by the Council of Graduate Schools and the Graduate Record Examinations Board. In arts and humanities, the figure was about 16 percent; in business, a little more than 18 percent. The dearth of Americans is even more pronounced in hot STEM fields like computer science, which serve as talent pipelines for the likes of Google, Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft: About 64 percent of doctoral candidates and almost 68 percent in master’s programs last year were international students, according to an annual survey of American and Canadian universities by the Computing Research Association. In comparison, only about 9 percent of undergraduates in computer science were international students (perhaps, deans posit, because families are nervous about sending offspring who are barely adults across the ocean to study).

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