USC leads in number of foreign students

For the eighth consecutive year, USC enrolled the highest number of foreign students of any U.S. university last year, a new report shows.

USC, which recruits strongly in Asia, had 7,482 international students in the 2008-09 school year, according to the study by the Institute of International Education with support from the State Department.

In all, USC enrolls about 34,000 undergraduate and graduate students.

New York University, with 6,761, had the second-largest international contingent and Columbia University, with 6,685, ranked third. UCLA was in eighth place, with 5,590. California had the most foreign students, followed by New York and Texas.

The Open Doors survey, released Monday, showed that the number of international students at about 3,000 U.S. colleges and universities rose 8% last year to a new high of 671,616. Big increases in students from China helped fuel the rise. As in other recent years, India once again sent the most students to the U.S., followed by China, South Korea, Canada and Japan.


But there are indications that the growth might have slowed this fall because of economic conditions and concerns about the H1N1 virus. A related but separate survey of 700 schools by the institute and seven other education organizations showed that 45% of those campuses reported an increase in foreign students this fall, compared to 56% last year.