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November 14, 2018

Missouri in the top third for number of international students

New report shows $627 million in economic impact

A report released earlier this week shows Missouri ranks 13th in the number of international students studying in the state.

According to the 2018 Open Doors Report from the Institute of International Education, Missouri’s international enrollment was 23,014, ranking Missouri number 13 for 2017. The number of international students has increased significantly in the last several years – Missouri ranked 16th in 2010.

Nationwide, the number of international students increased 1.5 percent, surpassing 1 million students for the third consecutive year, and reaching an all-time high.

“The high quality degrees offered at Missouri's colleges and universities continue to attract international students in record numbers," said Zora Mulligan, Missouri commissioner of higher education. “We are honored these students have chosen Missouri to pursue a degree. Having international students on our campuses adds value – it increases cultural awareness and helps to foster a global view that is crucial in today’s workforce.”

The number of Missouri students studying abroad for academic credit stayed steady with recent years, at 5,782 students. According to the Open Doors Report, one in 10 U.S. undergraduates studies abroad before graduating.

Students from India made up the greatest percentage of international students in Missouri. Other countries with large numbers of students studying in the state include China, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Nepal.

Missouri universities enrolling the greatest number of international students are:

  • University of Central Missouri, 4,035

  • Washington University, 3,417

  • University of Missouri-Columbia, 2,547

  • University of Missouri-Kansas City, 2,162

  • Missouri State University, 1,484

    International students made a significant financial impact on the United States in 2017, contributing $42.4 billion to the U.S. economy through tuition, room and board, and other expenses, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. The economic impact to Missouri was more than $627 million.

    For more information about findings from the Open Doors Report, visit https://www.iie.org/