|Tuesday, January 19, 2021
Turkey is named as one of the countries that has accommodated the most foreign students in the world, according to .
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) has compiled data on the countries hosting the most foreign students in the world and Turkey has taken the 10th spot as it entertained 125,138 students in 2018.
According to the data, the US has topped the list by hosting 987,314 out of 5,571,402 international students in the world who are studying in higher education institutions.
America was followed by the UK who boasted 452,079 students, while Australia took the third spot with 444,514 students.
The Chairman of Turkey's Higher Education Council (YOK), Prof. Dr. Yekta Sarac, said in a statement that the number of international student numbers was 48,183 in 2014 in Turkey.
Sarac said the soaring number flocking to Turkey for higher education was the outcome of Turkey's policy of internationalising the country's education.
By offering a variety of courses and avenues to foreign students, he said, Turkey has become one of the key places for higher education on the global stage.
Sarac said that the number has increased by two and a half times in the last four years, and the increase allowed the country to be recognised among the top hosts in the world.
The share of international students was 1.07 percent in 2014, while this rate rose to 2.24 percent in 2018.
UNESCO releases its data on higher education every two to three years, sometimes more.
”We believe we will see that Turkey will go to higher places in the top 10 countries (in the coming years)," Sarac said.
“Because the number of international students in our country, which was 154 thousand 505 in 2019, has exceeded 200 thousand as of today.”
Despite the harsh living conditions created by the coronavirus pandemic, Turkey aims to host at least 220,000 international students in the coming months, thanks to some recent projects, such as virtual trade shows and other promotional activities.
A hub for international students
A total of 207 universities across the country offer some 60,000 different programs for foreign students coming to Turkey with their own means or through scholarships.
Turkish institutions offering scholarships to foreign students include the Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB), Council of Higher Education (YOK), Turkey’s Religious Affairs Directorate -- or Diyanet --Foundation, as well as other government institutions.
By 2023, Turkey aims to host over a quarter of a million international students.
Since the establishment of YTB in 2010, and its launch of "Turkey Scholarships", an increasing number of international students are finding Turkey an attractive hub.
Prior to 2019, at least 42,000 students applied for scholarships through the YTB program. By mid-2019, the figure had climbed to a whopping 146,000.
Turkey's scholarships programs not only offer financial aid to foreign students, but also provide them a stipend to help them settle in their desired university programs. The support creates a positive atmosphere on campus as international students benefit from the social, cultural and academic activities of the country's educational institutions.
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