California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) is a popular campus for international students, judging by its No. 2 national ranking among master’s degree institutions that enroll students from other countries. The rankings were listed in a recent article in the Chronicle of Higher Education.
CSULB enrolled 2,563 international students during the 2011-12 academic year (the most recent year for which data is available). The country represented most among CSULB’s international students is Saudi Arabia, with more than 325 student from that country, and India was a distant second with about 235. Next on the list was China, which had around 200 students from its borders, followed by Korea and Japan with about 180 and 175, respectively.
The rankings are based on the latest “Open Doors” report from the Institute of International Education (IIE).
“Here are three top reasons why international students choose Cal State Long Beach: the quality of our academic programs, our welcoming campus environment, and our location in the heart of Southern California,” said Nathan Jensen, senior director for CSULB’s Center for International Education. “We only need to continue to get the word out.
“We offer students quality academic programs which are offered at a lower cost than programs in other states,” he continued. “Many of our students come to study at CSULB because they have been told by former students how welcoming and supportive our campus is to international students. Students are also attracted to the weather and business environment of California.”
Jensen explained that the Center for International Education staff reaches out to prospective international students, processes their applications and advises them once they enroll to help them move to graduation successfully. He also believes the presence of international students is good for the campus’s American students.
“Interaction with international students in the classroom provides a valuable learning experience for our domestic students,” he pointed out. “Additionally, international students pay for the entire cost of their education, so these students do not ever displace California resident students. They actually allow the university to offer more sections of courses than we could otherwise.”
The article in the Chronicle of Higher Education noted that double-digit percentage growth in students from China along with a steady gain in Saudi Arabian students were largely responsible for a 5.7-percent increase in international enrollments in the United States over the 2010-11 year. The total number of international students enrolled in U.S. colleges in 2011-12 was 764,495.
The story also noted that for the first time in 11 years there were more international undergraduate students than graduate students in the United States. IIE President Allan E. Goodman told the publication that the change was significant because undergraduate students not only stay longer than graduate students, they also have more impact on campus culture, both inside and outside the classroom.