BOULDER, Colo. –
The University of Colorado’s Boulder campus will try to increase its international student body by 50 percent over the next five to 10 years, interim Chancellor Phil DiStefano said.
There are 1,229 international students studying at the campus, which marks a full recovery from the post-9/11 slump, when American-bound students had problems getting visas, driver’s licenses and other required documents.
DiStefano said the school is exploring ways to “aggressively reach out to international students” as boosting foreign enrollment is among the goals of the university’s “Flagship 2030” plan. The long-term planning document seeks to better prepare students for an increasingly global workplace.
“One way to internationalize their experience is to bring the rest of the world here to campus,” said Larry Bell, director of CU’s Office of International Education.
The university doesn’t currently spend money recruiting students from overseas, but school leaders are considering making the investment. They’re also considering opening satellite campuses, possibly internationally, according to Flagship 2030.
CU has also hosted and participated in cross-global conferences this past year.
Bell said now is a good time to bolster recruitment efforts because out-of-state domestic enrollment is uncertain, as the recession causes some American families to re-think whether they can afford the more expensive tuition. International students could help buoy the possible drop in non-resident students.
“One way to internationalize their experience is to bring the rest of the world here to campus,” he said.
He said the university should look to Central and South America to recruit more students, since there’s not much representation from those regions on CU’s campus now.
CU spokesman Bronson Hilliard said other colleges and universities across the country are exploring ways to build international enrollment, and the topic was featured at a higher-education conference last week.
“It’s a key strategy for all major American public universities to really become international universities,” he said.
Following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, other countries built up their recruitment programs and capitalized on the obstacles in the United States, with Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom having national policies encouraging the recruitment of international students.