Recent research conducted by global consultancy firm A.T. Kearney shows Sydney is the most popular destination in the world for international university students. Sydney ranked higher than many cities such as London, New York, and Paris, which won the title last year according to QS World University Rankings.
The firm’s 2014 Global Cities Index found that a majority of international students come from China, India, South Korea, Malaysia and Vietnam. The report also stated that the number of students originating from Pakistan, Colombia and the Philippines is increasing.
Sydney’s Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the international student community has contributed more than $1.6 billion to the Sydney’s economy. She added that a high international student population “helps build Sydney’s cultural diversity and strengthen our regional and global connections.”
Moore named Sydney’s prestigious education institutions, quality employment and research experience, lifestyle and strong economy as reasons why students would choose Sydney.
While the result is a win for Sydney’s universities, international students in NSW are still denied student concessions on most types of public transport tickets, and face other difficulties, such as a lack of assistance within educational institutions.
Emma Liu, an international student at USyd, says Sydney University “must not take it for granted that foreign students will keep coming and thus lose motivation to support them.” Institutions should “actively invest in facilities and support for international students,” Liu said.
The Federal Government estimates that Sydney has 50,000 international students studying at universities, and another 50,000 studying specialty and English courses. International students at high schools are not included in these statistics.