For Chinese Students, U.S. Universities Aren’t Worth It

544,500 Chinese students went abroad to study in 2016, with the U.S. being the top choice. Many are regretting...

By Ryan Velez

Many students grit and bear the prices of a college education due to the promise of being able to get a better career with a degree. But from the outside looking in, American universities aren’t necessarily the premium that they are promised to be, as a recent article from We Are Resonate goes into. 544,500 Chinese students went abroad to study in 2016, with the U.S. being the top choice. Many are regretting their decision.

Roy Zhang is one such example, who actually managed to get into one of the top 30 universities in the country, but says that it wasn’t worth it. “Studying abroad is like a siege; the people outside of the city want to get in, and at the same time, the men inside the city want to get out,” Zhang said.

“I lost so much studying in the U.S., and some of what I lost is irretrievable. Also, I don’t think the results can pay back what my family invested in my study abroad.” Academically, he could have gone to a top Chinese school. “If you can go to a top 10 university or universities participating in project 211 or project 985, don’t come to the US and settle for a top 30 university,” Zhang said. “You will find that the quality of your classmates are generally lower, and your chances of making useful business connections are fewer.”

“You will never get to see what real elites are like and are not able to blend into the mainstream community in the US.” He recommends that only those who are extremely rich should bother studying in the U.S. Hang Wei graduated from Purdue two years ago, but regrets it as well. “I didn’t have a clear goal. I did not know what I wanted to achieve when I decided to study overseas, so I just came back with an average degree and slightly better English language skills.” There are also safety concerns. This marks a major drop in international students in general. Nearly 40% of U.S. schools reported a significant drop in applicants from China, India and the Middle East according to a report by the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers.

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