International Student From Nigeria, India Decreases, UK Universities Face Bankruptcy

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UK Universities

There are about 15 universities currently considering cutting jobs, and courses this academic year in the UK.

Many more have announced cost-saving plans that could lead to redundancies or courses being scrapped to save tens of millions according to The Times.

Also, overseas students who are not taking research degrees are now barred from bringing their families. In addition, James Cleverly, the home secretary, suggested scrapping visas that allow students to work in Britain for two or three years after graduation.

However, this may not be unconnected to the UK government’s recent introduction of higher education reforms that will crack down on “rip-off” degrees and ensure student visas are used for education rather than immigration.

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University leaders have therefore warned of “really difficult” cuts, such as discontinuing entire courses and laying off academic staff, as a loss of one-third of international students threatens to put several institutions into the red.

students currently face fewer teaching staff, lower quality, and fewer options as universities struggle to slash costs in response to a reduction in the number of wealthy international students.

Universities say bankruptcies are a “realistic possibility” with one in ten already cutting staff this year.

Indian students are being deterred as the the government cracks down on visas While Nigeria’s economic crises have led to a collapse in applications.

Tuition rates have effectively been unchanged for more than a decade, and with most colleges now losing money on domestic students, they have offset their losses with international students who pay significantly more.

Over the last four years, numbers have increased by 60%, reaching 560,000.

However, early acceptance data predicts a 37% decrease in overseas recruits in the coming fiscal year. Data from Nigeria will be down 71% after a sevenfold increase in enrolments in four years saw the country overtake the entire EU with 33,000 students at British universities.

The Executive Secretary of the Committee of University Chairs, John Rushforth, said: 

“I’ve been in higher education for 30 years and senior leaders are more worried than I’ve ever seen them.”

“…bankruptcy is a realistic possibility for some institutions and universities are having to do really difficult things to stave that off. 

“Taking fewer British students is a last resort but if you’re making a loss on something people have to consider it. Everything has got to be looked at because the situation is so serious.

“Universities have to think hard about what they want to protect and make choices about divesting themselves of things that are not core to the institution. There will be less choice for students. A lot of institutions have introduced lots of modules so that students can pick and choose. That’s expensive, so it may be that you go back to more generic courses. 

“Fundamentally, either you have to increase income, or you reduce quality or volume.”

Rachel Hewitt, chief executive of MillionPlus, the group for newer universities, said:

“The economic crisis in Nigeria presents difficulties for any university seeking to recruit from that country” 
“The existing tuition fee model coupled with high inflation has seen their income fall year on year, meaning institutions have to make difficult choices and do more with less”.

She also blamed ministers, saying:

 “It is impossible to imagine the government going out of its way to make Britain less inviting to investment in almost any other sector and yet every negative headline and policy reform that makes Britain less attractive to international students damages both the higher education sector and UK plc.”

Nevertheless, some Universities to discontinue certain courses.

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