It’s no news that Chinese students have been attending American graduate schools for a long time. More recently, however, high school graduates from China have been filling American colleges in record numbers, reports New York Times.
And it’s not just the well-known colleges across the United States that are attracting Chinese students. Most international students – include those from China – have to pay full tuition fees because of their ineligibility for financial aid. With the economic crisis continuing to take its toll on school funding, colleges – regional, state, as well as community – now welcome students from China with open arms.
The surge in the number of Chinese students in American colleges mirrors that of China’s meteoric rise in its economic status as the second largest economy in the world. With increased affluence, China has doubled its number of colleges since the 1990s and nowadays more than 60 percent of young people go to university after graduating from high school, leading to an enormous growth in college graduates, and, subsequently, increased tension in the already hyper-competitive local job market (just imagine competing with one fifth of the world’s population!).
Given this hostile job environment for young graduates, it’s not hard to understand why parents from China’s growing middle-class are eager to get their children (or more precisely, their only child) into a reputable university, regardless of the costs involved, in order to give their child that extra edge over other potential job candidates.