The number of Nigerians studying in the colleges and universities in the United States is on the rise with the country ranked as the 15th largest country worldwide with students in the U.S. according to a report by the Institute of International Education’s (IIE) 2015 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange released on Monday.
The report also stated that international students’ enrolment increased by ten percent to a record high of 974,926 students in the 2014/15 academic year, marking the highest rate of growth in 35 years.
“This strong growth confirms that the United States remains the destination of choice in higher education. The United States hosts more of the world’s 4.5 million globally mobile college and university students than any other country in the world. Nearly 90,000 more international students enrolled in U.S. higher education in 2014/15 compared to the previous year.
“The new report indicates there were 9,494 students from Nigeria studying in the United States in 2014/15, making Nigeria the leading source of students from Africa and the 15th largest country worldwide among international students in the United States. This marks a three-year high in the number of Nigerians studying in the United States since 2012.”
The release of the new Open Doors data marks the celebration of International Education Week, a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education to prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn, and exchange experiences in the United States.
Students from Nigeria in the United States study primarily at the undergraduate level, with 50.2 percent enrolled at the undergraduate level, 35.2 percent at the graduate level, 12.6 percent pursuing optional practical training, and two percent in non-degree programs or short-term studies.
“International experience is one of the most important components of a 21st century education.
“Studying abroad is one of the best ways undergraduate and graduate students gain the international experience necessary to succeed in today’s global workforce. And studying in another country prepares students to be real contributors to working across borders to address key issues in the world we share,” said IIE’s President, Dr. Allan E. Goodman.