Students are facing conflicting messages about studying abroad
Although many students did decide to go to university overseas last year, there seemed to be a trend in students applying at least a little closer to home, and popular destinations like the USA, the UK and Australia were losing their grips on the top spots (thanks in part to the Trump administration, Brexit, and Australia’s stringent border closures following the COVID-19 outbreak).
The students that did choose to apply abroad likely had strong convictions about their decisions - and we’re sure they’re glad that they stuck to them! But for those who were wavering, the messaging was quite clear: eliminate all avoidable travel.
This year, though, things aren’t so black and white. Policies vary hugely between different countries in everything from student visa dispensation, to admitting foreigners, to quarantine and testing rules.
Entrance to some countries, like Australia, remains very difficult for international students. At the same time, other countries like Canada seem to be facilitating as many international applicants as possible!
There’s also a huge divergence in opinion, with some people feeling totally comfortable travelling again while others are still cautious.
That can add extra confusion to the already intense university research process. It also means that students might feel pulled between different influences in their lives.
For example, their grandparents might be reluctant for them to travel given the ongoing health risks and the potential complications that could arise for travelling home. Their parents, on the other hand, could be urging them to pursue the most academically prestigious university overseas or encouraging them to have an adventure abroad.
The class of 2022 will likely have an even harder time balancing conflicting pressures and priorities than the class of 2021, with everything being much less clean-cut.