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New Delhi: Indians comprise nearly 20 per cent of all international students in the United States, a figure that is projected to surge in the coming years, Patricia Lacina, Chargé d'Affaires, US Embassy in India, said on Thursday.
Noting that the US issued a record-breaking 82,000 student visas to Indians this year, Lacina said it is a remarkable rebound after previous delays caused by the pandemic.
"Indians comprise nearly 20 per cent of all international students in the United States, a figure that is projected to surge in the coming years. This number inspires me for several reasons. On the economic front, a thriving, well-educated workforce will bolster both our economies," she said at the US Study Abroad Fair here.
"The innovations you unlock will create more jobs and more opportunities for both our countries. This will increase security and prosperity in our countries and will propel both the United States and India to play a greater role on the world stage," she added.
The Chargé d'Affaires noted that the United States currently has one of the largest Indian diasporas in the world.
"Many members of that diaspora began their journey by coming to the United States to study. International student mobility is central to US diplomacy and fundamental in maintaining an atmosphere of continued security, innovation, and economic prosperity.
"There is no better way to gain new exposure, to enjoy new experiences, and to build new expertise, than through an international education. And there is no better place to pursue your educational goals than the United States of America. I should note the diversity and inclusivity on display here today is reflective of what you will find at US campuses across our nation, meaning that there is a perfect fit for every student," she said.
The United States has issued a record 82,000 student visas to Indians in 2022, highest than any other country.
"This figure also reflects the importance that the United States places on education. Our embassy in New Delhi and our consulates in Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, and Mumbai made processing student visas top priority to ensure that qualified students could reach the United States in time to begin their higher studies.
"We also worked with higher education institutions to maintain an open and welcoming environment for international students, even during the pandemic. Schools have instituted a broad range of safety measures to welcome students from abroad. They have increased flexibility to allow for in-person, online, and hybrid learning mechanisms. At the same time, schools have maintained a robust range of opportunities for international students," she said.