International Students on the Rise at CNC
Prince George, B.C. – The number of international students enrolled at the College of New Caledonia is on the rise.
Anne Harris, operations manager for International Education at CNC, says 364 foreign students are enrolled this year, a 17% jump from last year.
She says the majority come from India and China, but from many African countries as well.
Harris is pleased with the increase considering how difficult it can be to bring them here.
“Oh it’s very competitive. If you think about every college, every institution in Canada, most of them recruit internationally,” says Harris.
“On a global scale Canada also competes with other countries like the United States, the U.K., Australia, New Zealand.”
Does that make Prince George a tough sell?
“Prince George can be a tough sell in that students will have heard of cities like Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal,” she says. “So getting them past the idea there are opportunities for education and then convincing them to come to somewhere like Prince George can be hard.”
But Harris notes there are some major selling points of studying at CNC which are attractive to students – including small class sizes, relatively cheap tuition and a low cost of living.
“When we compare what students pay here compared to Vancouver or Toronto then they can obviously save a bit of money.”
Once the sell job is complete and they’ve arrived, she says they provide a nice boost to the school’s bottom line.
“The international students bring in revenue through the tuition they pay,” says Harris.
“As well as that, having more on campus allows us to open more classes for both international and domestic students.”
According to the Ministry of Advanced Education, international students are having a big financial impact throughout northern, B.C.
In 2011-12 for instance, there were 1,400 international students in the North, pumping $36 million into the economy.
The ministry estimates that boost came through direct spending on things like tuition, accommodation, arts, culture and recreation.
In fact the ministry estimates each international student spends approximately $20,400 each year in communities throughout the province.
The benefits international students can bring to communities hasn’t gone unnoticed by the City of Prince George.
In fact a report presented to council last night suggested the city could become an education destination.
For more information on that report, click here.