Press Release – Nov 16, 2009

2008-2009 Open Doors report reveals international student enrollment at U.S. schools hits all-time high

November 16, 2009: The number of international students at colleges and universities in the United States increased by 8 percent to an all-time high of 671,616 in the 2008-2009 academic year while the number of international students enrolled for the first time at a U.S. college or university in fall 2008 increased by 16 percent.

This represents the largest percentage increase in international student enrollments since 1980-1981. Those findings and more were released Monday in Open Doors 2009, the annual survey report published by the Institute of International Education with funding from the U.S. Department of State.

To better promote the benefits of an American education, a new EducationUSA Web site also debuted Monday at The site features a one-stop shop new media-based student page plus a page dedicated to the U.S. higher education community complete with a searchable database of EducationUSA advising centers and other handy reference tools.

Encouraging academic and intellectual exchange between nations is vital to building increased mutual understanding and promoting U.S. security and economic well-being, according to the State Department. International students contribute $17.8 billion to the U.S. economy, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Open Doors 2009 data and analysis are available at

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