Cuts to student visas = Cuts to courses

9 Mar

Ministers consider clamping down on foreign student visas this week, which could result in courses being closed down in leading institutes across the country.

Speaking to International students around Westminster University today, it would seem that the general feeling is that ministers are working in domestic interest; without a foreign student visa, many International students will lose out on jobs throughout the country.

One student said he believes that International students will head for countries such as America and Australia instead.


Yet this move could have terrible implications on leading colleges such as Imperial College, London, where many foreign students have paid huge sums of money to study.

Today I spoke to an Imperial College lecturer in project management, Alison Ahearn, on how she feels this could affect her classes.

Her postgraduate MSc classes “are nearly all overseas students. I would imagine that any curtailment on visas will mean I will have many fewer students in those classes”.


Ahearn said that the course gets oversubscribed, yet few of the applicants are British students. So, this could potentially lead to universities reliant on foreign students losing out, at worse the courses being axed.

Ahearn believes that this is because British students don’t seem as likely to spend their own money on furthering their education to Postgraduate level.

“The funding for ‘scholarships’ on those taught courses dried up considerably in the last few years and that has affected British student numbers,” says Ahearn.

Surely this will have an extremely damaging affect; how will universities be able to find the best applicants with visa restrictions?

I believe this is yet another example of those in power looking out for their own, restricting the diversity the country needs from the presence of foreign students.


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