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Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

Volume 9, Issue 14; April 21, 2010

Let’s Go Canada

Traditionally US bound PhD students opt to stay in India

Abroad Perspective

After the fall, Dubai’s Getex Fair finds its place

Over The Counter

Belgium expected to justify limit on foreign students

Globe Tipping

Should you purchase travel insurance?

Correction

1) LET’S GO CANADA – Traditionally US bound PhD students opt to stay in India

The US Council of Graduate Schools reported that in 2009 a 14 percent reduction in admission offers by us graduate programs to Indian applicants. The drop includes a 16 percent decline in first time enrollment from India and 12 percent decrease in graduate applications from India.

“There is a drop both in the number and the quality of PhD applications, more noticeably in the last two years,” according to Anand Sivasubramaniam, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at Pennsylvania State University.

Sivasubramaniam acknowledges that out of 700 international graduate applications received this year, the number of applications from top Indian institutes such as the IITs and IISc numbered less than 10.

There are a variety of factors contributing to the decline of US-bound Indian graduate students, ranging from less funding for research to lack of job prospects in the US after graduation.

As the US experiences a decline, India is retaining its PhD students. According to Urjit A. Yajnik, Professor of Physics at IIT-Bombay, the total number of PhD candidates at IIT increased 49 percent in 2009-2010. 

Furthermore, due to visa restrictions and lack of employment opportunities in the US, American educated PhD holders are returning to India. These graduates are now teaching and conducting research in India, according to Savdeep Sethi, Professor of Physics at the University of Chicago.

Source: “Back to India: US universities lose sheen.” News Center, April 21, 2010

2) ABROAD PERSPECTIVE – After the fall, Dubai’s Getex Fair finds its place

Like most things in Dubai, the GETEX Education Fair in that city is on a slide downwards from its peak of a few years back. The Spring 2010 edition of GETEX concluded last week in Dubai (April 13-17), and was less than half the size of what it was three years ago. Seemingly gone are the days that GETEX was a “must-come” for universities and colleges around the globe. Today, it is Indian institutions which have the largest presence in recruiting students from the region. The British presence has been cut well back. There are only a few Americans who come. Three Canadian universities took part in GETEX 2010, and two (Windsor and Victoria) are already in Dubai via the CUAC liaison office.

Moreover, GETEX is no longer about recruiting from the UAE, but recruiting students “to” the UAE. The most significant presence at GETEX is from local UAE universities, and the foreign campuses which are fighting for survival. Dubai has always punched well above its weight when it came to international education. Today, as GETEX recedes in size and status, it finds a natural resting place in terms of its global relevance. Still, the Fair is four days long, and typically has few visitors until the last two-day weekend, when it is busy. But for those representatives who choose to come to Dubai, four or five days in a city with luxury hotels and shopping malls, may be more of an attraction than the Fair itself.

3) OVER THE COUNTER – Belgium expected to justify limit on foreign students

The EU’s top court wants Belgium to justify a policy adopted in 2006 that caps the percentage of foreign students enrolled in nine physiotherapy and veterinary medicine courses in the French-speaking part of Belgium.

According to Belgium officials, before the policy was introduced, more than 75 percent of students enrolled in these medical programs were non-residents. The argument put forth by Belgian officials is that this caused a risk to public health as not enough medical graduates were serving in the Belgian health system.
Opposition to the limits on foreign enrolments was made in the form of a case filed by 63 non-residents to the Belgian Constitutional Court, who in turn sought guidance from the European Court on the decree’s compatibility with EU law.

The European Court judged that the 30 percent limit policy is “indirect discrimination” and that the Belgian authority would have to prove that there is a link between shortages of Belgian medical school graduates and the quality of the health care system being provided.

Source: “EU court presses Belgium over curb on foreign students.” BBC, April 13, 2010.

4) GLOBE TIPPING – Should you purchase travel insurance?

You never know what to expect on a trip. As such, travel insurance may be worth considering, unless of course you have other types of insurance policies that cover travel.  Here is how to determine if purchasing travel insurance is right for you:
 


1. Know what is covered by a plan: most insurance include trip cancellation or interruption, accidental death or dismemberment, medical and dental care, loss of luggage or personal possessions and protection against bankruptcy of your cruise line or tour operator.

2. Find out if you already have coverage: you may already have homeowners’ or renters’ insurance that can cover you in the case of theft or losses while traveling. Similarly, your existing medical and auto insurance may provide additional coverage.

3. Check if your credit cards and auto club membership provide extra coverage.

4. If you decide to purchase travel insurance it is always advisable to get your coverage from an established provider rather than through the travel agent or tour operator.

5. Know what questions to ask. Find out in detail what is covered and what assistance is provided from the insurance company in the event of a medical emergency.

For more tips on travel insurance click here.
Source: “Is travel insurance worth the extra money?” MSNBC, June 11, 2008.

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