IMPORTANCE OF INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS AND SCHOLARS IN THE UNITED STATES; Congressional Record Vol. 165, No. 71
(Extensions of Remarks - May 01, 2019)

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[Extensions of Remarks]
[Page E516]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




 IMPORTANCE OF INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS AND SCHOLARS IN THE UNITED STATES

                                 ______
                                 

                          HON. ELIOT L. ENGEL

                              of new york

                    in the house of representatives

                         Wednesday, May 1, 2019

  Mr. ENGEL. Madam Speaker, today is National Decision Day. It is an 
exciting time of year for students as they commit to colleges across 
the United States. I rise to speak in support of the international 
scholars who choose to attend our American academic institutions. Their 
presence in the U.S. is an asset to our country's culture and economy.
   While the Department of State's annual Open Doors report states that 
the United States is still the top location for international students, 
a concerning statistic shows that new international student enrollment 
declined by 6.6 percent during the 2017-2018 school year.
   The congressional district I represent greatly benefits from 
international student enrollment in our local colleges and 
universities. In addition to their intellectual and research 
contributions, these students make an annual financial contribution of 
$52.2 million dollars and support the creation of several hundred jobs 
each year. We're at risk of losing this valuable talent and the 
benefits they bring to the residents of New York's 16th District.
   But it's not just my district that will suffer--the entire country 
will. Although they only make up 5.5 percent of higher education 
enrollment in the United States, the economic value that international 
students have on our economy is significant. In the 2017-2018 academic 
year alone, international students studying at U.S. colleges and 
universities contributed $39 billion to the U.S. economy and supported 
over 450,000 jobs. For every seven international students enrolled, 
three U.S. jobs are created and supported through spending in the 
higher education, health insurance, and transportation sectors, among 
others.
   International education doesn't just foster economic benefits; it 
advances learning and scholarship. Students want to come to the United 
States because they know that this country has some of the world's 
greatest educational opportunities. However, as a result of delays in 
processing student visas in recent years, many international scholars 
have decided to study in other countries, such as Canada and Australia, 
which have more welcoming policies. As a result, our country is missing 
out on incredible talent, and students are foregoing the opportunity to 
study in one of the best education systems in the world.
   As the Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, I am 
grateful for the work international students are doing every day to 
strengthen ties with countries around the world. International 
education develops cultural understanding and respect among different 
peoples.
   We need to send the message that international students and scholars 
who want to study in the United States are welcome. I urge my 
colleagues to work with me in ensuring that the United States continues 
to be the world's best destination for academic study.

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