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More International Students Choosing Missouri for Higher Education

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) - A new report ranks Missouri 12th nationwide for the number of international students enrolled at the state’s colleges and universities.

More than 17,300 international students – an increase of 7.7 percent – chose Missouri as their destination for higher education during the 2012-2013 academic year, according to the Institute of International Education’s Open Doors 2013 report. The state previously ranked 13th nationwide in the number of international students.

The number of Missouri students studying abroad also increased, from 4,650 to 4,938.

“International education fosters an exchange of cultural experiences and ideas on our campuses and in our communities that is crucial in our global society,” said Britta Wright, chair of Study Missouri and director of international student services at Columbia College. “We are pleased to see an increasing number of foreign students coming to Missouri for higher education opportunities as well as more Missourians studying in other countries.”

Study Missouri is a consortium of more than 40 colleges and universities that promotes the state’s diverse academic opportunities to students in other countries and study abroad opportunities for Missouri students.

More than one-third of international students studying in Missouri are from China. Other countries with the highest number of students in the state are India, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Japan.

Missouri universities enrolling the largest numbers of international students are:

  • University of Missouri-Columbia, 2,490 students;
  • Washington University, 2,235 students;
  • Missouri State University, 1,482 students;
  • University of Missouri-Kansas City, 1,287 students; and
  • Lindenwood University, 1,245 students.

The report also examines the economic impact of international education. Total expenditures by foreign students in Missouri were estimated at more than $452 million during the 2012-2013 academic year.

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