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Report: Northeastern is a top destination for international students

Northeastern University is the nation’s sixth most popular higher education destination among international students from all over the world, according to the Institute of International Education’s annual Open Doors Report.

The census was released last month and was based on a 2011-12 academic year student enrollment survey of approximately 3,000 accredited U.S. institutions. The report’s data includes a tally of international students who have graduated within the last two years and still have a valid student visa.

International student enrollment at Northeastern has increased dramatically over the last several years. More than 6,300 international students from more than 140 countries worldwide are currently enrolled, a figure that represents a 15 percent increase from last year and a 165 percent increase from five years ago.

“International students are increasingly recognizing the reputation and flexibility of a Northeastern education,” said Ronne Patrick Turner, the university’s associate vice president of enrollment.

She praised Northeastern’s international student body for bringing a global perspective to the classroom and campus community, saying, “We want to develop global citizens and create an exchange of ideas about the world.”

Shuntaro Okuzawa, a Tokyo native and fourth-year student in the College of Engineering, agreed with Turner’s assessment of the educational and social value of building a robust international student community.

Exchanging cultural and social beliefs, he explained, “creates an opportunity for U.S. and international students to learn more about each other and understand their differences.”

Shuntaro chose Northeastern for a chance to participate in the university’s signature experiential education program, which includes co-op, study abroad and Dialogue of Civilizations programs in 92 countries around the world.

He noted that his co-op experience as a project manager for IBM’s branch in the Philippines has prepared him to succeed in any working environment. “I really believe in the integration of classroom knowledge and real-world experience,” Shuntaro said. “Working within a large corporation requires you to be assertive, plan ahead and communicate effectively.”

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