Dalhousie looks for more students to study abroad

The number of students studying in foreign countries has been decreasing slightly

Grace Carline, an international development student at Dal. Photo: Takaichi Kogata

Because Dalhousie has many agreements with other universities and more than 90 options for international exchange, a number of students use exchange programs.

In 2010, there were 323 foreign students who came to Dalhousie from other schools, while 526 came in 2013.

While Dalhousie attracts many students, fewer Dal students are going abroad. In 2010, 467 students studied abroad from Dal, but the next year it decreased to 426. In 2012, the number declined to 371 which fell below the number of incoming exchange students.

Some students are concerned about costs, and that is one of the main reasons. Samantha Dixon, a first-year Dalhousie management student, is interested in going abroad but worried about the cost.

“I completely understand that it’s expensive,” she said. “It is the biggest issue for me as well. I get tuition from my mom. How do you afford university? But also how do you afford to go abroad?”

Amy Braye, a study abroad and exchange adviser at Dal, thinks some undergraduate students worry about whether they can graduate within four years, but the office is trying its best to support students.

“They have to get academic advising before they leave to know what they need,” Braye says. “If students take a full-time course load, they always get full credits after they come back to Dal and King’s.”

Dal has two styles of exchange: through the international centre at Dal or through their own subject department.

“The international number is increasing and the department (number) has been decreasing,” Braye says.

“I think certain programs that had reasonably high participation have been canceled.”

It is still unclear why the number is falling, but they are trying to figure that out.

“We have been doing our best to compensate for the decreasing departmental programs, it’s going to take a while.”

She hopes more students enjoy the distinct experience of studying abroad and bring their experiences back to Dal.

“The goal of the university is to increase the internationalization of the campus.”