The coronavirus pandemic has caused a clampdown on international traveling and made students all over the world feel its effect. Restrictions on travel and numerous suspended or canceled flights resulted in tightened global mobility. Most study abroad programs have been canceled; universities have recalled their students, and a lot of them remained stranded in foreign countries on lockdown. All this is happening because of the necessity to stop the spread of the COVID-19 disease.
The education systems of all countries are suffering from the impact of the coronavirus. For instance, Italy welcomed nearly 37,000 students from America in the 2017-18 school year. According to the information from the Institute of International Education, it is the second leading study abroad destination for U.S. students. But currently, it has been hit particularly hard as the coronavirus death toll has surpassed 7,500 there.
Today, students face numerous challenges in study abroad programs. For example, Brennan Sisco from Fordham University in New York shared that when she was halfway through a four-month program in London, she was unexpectedly recalled. Although Brennan realizes the reasons for that, she’s still disappointed with the fact that the COVID-9 pandemic disrupted her time abroad. She felt it heartbreaking to lose her abroad experience. Now Sisco is continuing her study online like most other students, as colleges have moved to remote instruction.
Let’s consider another case of Mariamane Akopyan from San Jose State University in California. She was recalled from her program in France when the situation started escalating. When the Trump administration announced a travel ban, she and her classmates struggled to get back home, buying plane tickets and spending up to $2,000 for them. Although Mariamane managed to get back to America despite travel difficulties, some of her belongings remained in Paris. Like others, she’s
taking classes online now facing problems with accommodation to the group’s time zone.
Such troubles make the learning process much more complicated. They lead to increased stress levels and exhaustion. Luckily, advanced technology provides students with all the necessary help online. Today, young people can get their assignments completed on the Internet or buy an essay here, which makes their study during the pandemic much easier. Remote education can be less nerve-racking if students delegate some of their tasks to professionals. Moreover, writing essays or research papers can be done for free by peers from other universities or your friends who study the same disciplines.
International students are an essential part of the American education system that spurs modern innovation and contributes to the overall strength of society. But the coronavirus pandemic has caused American colleges to lose hundreds of thousands of international students over the failure to contain the pandemic, the difficulties of online learning as well as a hostile U.S. government. Just imagine that according to the Institute for International Education’s latest Open Doors report, nearly 1.1 million students arrived in the U.S. from abroad for college or practical training programs. Those foreign students spend more than $40 billion a year in America. So currently, billions of dollars spent by international students annually as well as the intellectual capital of having many of the world’s brightest minds are at stake.
Jessica Sarles-Dinsick works as an associate dean for international programs at Columbia University, so she expects 30- 40% of students might not come to America from abroad this year. That may cost universities nearly 400,000 students and the U.S. economy about $15 billion. The universities have been squeezed by the growing costs of going online and the loss of revenue from campus housing.
A National Foundation for American Policy analysis predicted that fall enrollment of international students could hit its lowest point since the end of World War II. They warned that enrollment was going to decline by 63%-98% compared to the 2018-19 level.
Therefore, some colleges are doing what they can to improve that statistic. For instance, Cornell University worked with some institutions to ensure that students can take lectures and live on their campuses abroad while also taking Cornell’s online courses via its Study Away program. Such hybrid programs are created in order to retain students and inspire them to come to the U.S. when
the pandemic threat is over.
All in all, there are many potential risks of studying abroad. Today, students face various challenges at each stage of their education. It’s both discouraging and emotionally draining for most of them. As a result, a lot of young people decide to stop their international programs and get back to their home countries.
Paul Calderon works as a writer at a first-class essay service for students. He helps pupils keep up with the studies in the hard times of coronavirus by completing assignments for them. Paul believes that now students need support more than ever before, so he does his best to make their learning less stressful and more efficient.