The increased enrollment of international students has placed CSUN in “second place among U.S. master’s level institutions hosting students from foreign countries,” according to an Open Door 2006 annual report.
For the 2005-06 school year, there were 1,693 international students enrolled at CSUN.
The Open Door report, which was produced by the Institute of International Education, gives detailed data about foreign students enrolled in various colleges and their majors.
CSUN created an outreach recruitment program specifically to draw in international students.
A major goal of CSUN’s Outreach Program, created this academic year, is the recruitment of international students, said Carol McAllister, who works in International Admissions and Evaluations.
Leslie Landes was appointed as the new international recruiter.
CSUN recruited foreign students from community colleges or students as part of the Intensive English Program on campus.
In the 2004-05 school year, there were 1,343 foreign students enrolled.
“Last year, visas were hard to come by,” said Roopa Rawjee, CSUN’s foreign student adviser.
Foreign students are interviewed in the visa application process. The U.S. government looks at whether the student will return to their country after their education in the U.S., Rawjee said. It usually takes a student two weeks to six months to receive his or her temporary visa.
“The change in economy and the political relationship the U.S. has with other countries also adjusted enrollment rates among international students,” Rawjee said. Indians come to America to obtain a degree, and once that is completed they go back to their country to continue work.
“Before obtaining their visas they need to show ties to their family, property, and or job,” Rawjee said.
The majority of foreign students are coming from Asian countries, according to the Open Door report.
“The American degree is highly valued in Asia,” Rawjee said. “Foreign students enter majors such as business, engineering, CTVA and music.”
“I was studying music therapy in Asia and I heard about CSUN’s music therapy program while in Asia,” said junior Grace Shin, an international student from Korea.
International students pay non-resident tuition for the same education that Americans receive. Tuition for a full-time undergraduate residential student can cost an estimated $1,521, while tuition costs an estimated $339 per unit, excluding other fees, for non-residential undergraduate students.
The estimated time it takes to receive a degree for an American student is the same for an international student. An undergraduate degree can take four to five years while a graduate degree can take an estimated three years to complete.
Foreign students have to pay for their education through loans or from the money that their family saves.
The length of the temporary visa varies; it lasts as long as the student is pursuing their education.
The dorms offer more experience for international students and their interaction with American students.
Aside from CSUN having good majors, this college is near Los Angeles, which is yet another reason why foreign students choose CSUN.
“I chose CSUN because it was a nice campus with a lot of different restaurants and shops nearby,” said Ayline Tran, former international student. “American students’ way of life is very different from my own. It was a good experience for me to live with people who speak another language and (are) from a different culture.” Tran, who is from France, initially came to CSUN because of the IEP offered.
“Foreign students allowed for more diverse classrooms for the CSUN campus,” McAllister said, adding in a second interview that such diversity is a benefit of having more international students at the university. She said that a hope is that American students can learn from international students, and vice versa.
“All my classmates were from another country, so I learned to work with different people and to use a new language,” Tran said. “My street talk class helped (me) to understand some of my American’s way of speaking.”