The novel CoronaVirus has disrupted the whole world at a pace that is not rapidly recoverable. The foreign education sector is facing tremendous repercussions due to the ongoing pandemic. At the same time, the students face constant ambiguity as to what will happen for abroad studies post COVID-19.
With this article, we hope to draw some deep insights touching different parameters of pursuing masters abroad post this pandemic. Let’s get started.
Deferrals, Delays, and Postponement to the next year (2021-2022) for abroad studies post COVID-19
If you were planning to study in the US, Canada, UK, or Australia, then you should know a few things. Most of the universities there may allow deferrals in admission by a semester or a year. Therefore what you’ve got to do us write an email to the university. Enquire all there is about the deferrals. Also, if you decide to defer your foreign education by a year, plan wisely. You have to make sure that you utilize the interim time very well. You can either pursue a course here or take up a job and gain some work experience. Then, a year later, you can go to your foreign university and pursue your masters.
Due to the global crisis and lockdown restrictions, obviously travel is prohibited. Hence most of the programs have delayed their student intake to the next admission intake. Since there is no clarity on when the situation will improve, it’s very chaotic. Many students who have already gotten admission are reconsidering because the classes have moved online.
What if the application is under process?
Then comes the students whose application is in process. There’s much more confusion here than anywhere else. With the application in process for the coming intake, there are already students from the previous intake who have not been postponed to this one. Therefore universities as well as students are in a fix as to how to approach this.
See, the fact of the matter is that studying abroad will still be possible in the next academic year, but not how you originally thought. Many universities specially the UK ones are developing contingency plans to take all of these programs online until the students can physically attend college. This means that universities will still accept international students in the next academic year but with the above-mentioned conditions. Also, a lot of universities are now offering virtual study programs, like Northeastern University where they are ensuring a uniquely immersive experience as well as a chance for the students to explore global ideas and engage with cross-cultural perspectives.
University Admissions (updates and changes) for abroad studies post COVID-19
Universities all around the world have updated their application process and university admission criteria to suit the whole pandemic situation.
At the University of Oxford, applications are still being processed. An online form has been provided on the website for any queries that the students have. If your program requires you to take an English-language test, the students have a deadline for the UK summer. If until then, the test centers do not reopen, they will provide further guidance on how to proceed.
Caltech is accepting international students from all around the world. But all arrivals at the university will have to initially follow self-quarantine guidelines. Also, all admission-related campus visit activities have been suspended.
You can know more application process updates about all the universities Foreignadmits.com.
Changes in the tuition fees for abroad studies post COVID-19
With the pandemic taking a hot on the global economy, universities have been forced to take their classes, examinations, and application processes online. Also, there have been calls to the universities for tuition fees to be reduced or even canceled, which has caused significant debate amongst students and the college administrators.
As a response to these many universities has altered their tuition fees to some extent. As much as 85 universities around the world have altered the tuition fees. Some of them are as follows:
|NAME OF THE UNIVERSITY
|ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology
|University of Antwerp
|University of California, Riverside
|Iowa State University
|University of Texas at Dallas
|Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)
|Birkbeck, University of London
|Texas A&M University – Commerce
Further, you can check about the changes in tuition fees on the individual websites of your shortlisted university.
Country-wise updates for abroad studies post COVID-19
Apart from various online degrees, most Australian universities are offering heavy fee-waivers and monetary support to international students.
For example, Deakin University is allowing international students to take up courses online. It is also offering super easy exit options. For those facing hardships of COVID19, the university has also announced up to AUD 25 million support for the international students. Also, the varsity is offering refunds if the student wishes to opt-out of the course, provided the student chooses to enroll in another within a year from the date of deferment.
The Australian-based B-school, LaTrobe University, is offering scholarships up to 30% of the entire tuition fee of the program that the student is pursuing including for students who are studying courses online. This institute has allocated a roundabout AUD 6.8 million to support its influx of international students. Plus, the university has also introduced a supremely flexible refund policy to support the recruitment of the international students who enroll in online courses with the university and this includes the provision of full refunds for withdrawals before the census date.
Macquarie University, one more of the renowned Australian Universities which is known to offer scholarships up to 25% of the tuition fees for the entire course, is now also offering full-time programs like Global MBA and Bachelor of Arts completely digitally via portals like Coursera and Open Universities Australia platforms.
2. The United Kingdom
The majority of the universities based in the United Kingdom (UK) are offering numbered relaxations, counseling, and special adjustments for international students who have been affected by the novel COVID19 situation including the students who have delayed results, etc.
Because of this pandemic, the education system is facing huge repercussions, and to ease the application process for the students across the globe, the UEA is now accepting online certificate and degree copies to allow provisional admissions, considering that the original ones might be delayed.
A public institute in the UK, The University of Portsmouth, is offering various scholarships for especially Indian students to cover £1,600 and a £5,000 fee for the first year. The varsity is offering an MA in International Relations through online mediums, which happens to be one of the most sought after courses. The varsity has also now started accepting a wide number of English proficiency tests, considering the inability of the international students to take up IELTS.
3. The United States
The United States is helping combat this pandemic situation for international students by offering career support.
The University of South California, Viterbi School of Engineering has been providing an online learning environment ever since 1971 and it offers more than 40 graduate degree programs in this hybrid model. This institute is known to celebrate all forms of diversity including diversity of ideas. The varsity is claiming to support students through career services including advising, employer workshops, and recruitment events, and virtual networking events.
Competition in the coming years (2021 and 2022) post COVID-19
As we have very established, most of the institutes across the world are currently offering their traditional courses online to their on-going and upcoming batches. The campus studies are expected to resume in full-swing by 2021.
But the twist in the plot comes when they say that university entry in 2021 is likely to be a very competitive scenario for the international students. Though the batch of 2020 will have more options but the scholarships and fundings that they had access to this year, whether they will still hold validity in the next year is something that is yet to be decided on. But the popular opinion is that international students pursuing university entry in 2021 will face great competition.
Factors affecting job opportunities post COVID-19
Students who are set to seek foreign education in the coming years and pursue their post-graduate courses might face tough times ahead. The economic impact of this pandemic, COVID-19 is already visible in economies worldwide, especially in the US, Italy, UK, Spain, Australia, and Canada.
The fact of the matter is that these destinations are amongst the most favored ones for pursuing higher education. So the pertinent question becomes: will the international students get jobs there once they are done with their studies?
As hard as everything in the global economy is looking right now, the students seeking foreign education need to consider the possibility of a prolonged slowdown in these economies. Therefore, with that comes a low probability of finding employment in the first place, followed by jobs that pay well, after graduating.
Visa Changes & Updates for abroad studies post COVID-19
Mostly all countries have kept their visa applications on hold and are devising new guidelines every day. Also, most of the visa application centers around the world are either non-operational or offering limited services. Hence for visa application updates, you can check out the embassy portals to get up to date information.
Financial planning for abroad studies post COVID-19
It is absolutely no surprise that the cost of pursuing foreign education is significantly higher than pursuing education in India. On average, education loans run to over Rs 40-50 lakh for studying abroad. So for example, a student does not find employment in a foreign country and plans to come back to India, then obviously her income her in India will not be enough to repay the foreign education loan equated monthly installments (EMIs). Hence the decision has to be taken very wisely and thorough financial planning.
The students can check on their banks if they are offering lower interest rates. The next step is understanding whether your chosen university is offering any additional incentives. Such incentives support your education such as fee waivers and scholarships to international students. If you have a number of universities shortlisted, pick the one that best supports your education, financially! And lastly, keep looking for cheaper alternatives.
Effect of Economic Crisis on study abroad post COVID-19
The good news is that Rupee’s depreciation against foreign currencies will not have such a deep impact on foreign education. However, this only applies to those who have planned for their foreign education much in advance. Moreover, the depreciation of the rupee against all currencies is not equal.
Further, the global economic crisis is complicating international recruitment. This is because of the rising anti-Asian sentiment around the US and other parts of the world where racists are scapegoating Asians for the spread of the virus. Also, almost all countries are facing increasing political tensions with China, which happens to be one of the largest sending countries of international students. Moreover, the Us government has temporarily suspended the issuance of H-1B visas, which is a major drawback for international students from India, China, and around the world.
Emerging job sectors for the freshers post COVID-19
While we talk about low probabilities of securing a job in a foreign country, experts have envisioned a number of sectors that can open up a plethora of job opportunities for freshers. This includes job profiles like Robotic Process Automation Consultant, Back-end Developer, Growth Manager, Site Reliability Engineer, Customer Success Specialist, Full Stack Engineer, Robotics Engineer (Software), Cybersecurity Specialist, Python Developer, Digital Marketing Specialist, Front-end Engineer, and Lead Generation Specialist.
While the technology jobs rule this list predominantly, soft skills such as account management and customer retention are also becoming very critical. They signify the importance of human intervention at every level of digitization.