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Foreign politics aren’t stopping Chinese international students

Daily Campus

Originally Posted: September 25, 2019

He says the American Dream is broken.

“I used to want to be a doctor in the medicine field,” Zitong Huang says. “Because of President Trump, my green card got delayed.”

Huang is an SMU international student from Beijing, China who is majoring in Chemistry with minors in Business and Spanish. But that was not his original plan. Huang came to the U.S. to pursue his dream of becoming a doctor.

Huang says he would have to get his green card to stay in the U.S. long enough to earn his medical degree. Because of current immigration policies, he would have to wait about 10 to 15 years for a green card.

“I’m to waste another ten years to get my green card,” Huang says. “I don’t really have that time to like waste to get into the medical school since most of the medical schools ask for the residency with the citizenship.”

Despite America’s hostile immigration policies, Huang is one of the thousands of students from China who chooses to study in the United States.

Chinese students make up the largest number of international students in the United States. According to the Department of Homeland Security, roughly 370,000 Chinese students were pursuing some level of education or certification in the U.S. in March 2019. Nearly 140,000 of those students were working towards a bachelor’s degree.

According to SMU’S International Student & Student Scholar Services, (ISSS) China is the number one country of origin for international students at SMU. There were 1,082 Chinese students enrolled in the Fall 2018 semester. Claudia Sotomayor Hart, the director of ISSS, says China has consistently been one of the leading countries among the university’s international students.

“Our undergraduate students tend to be more from, well China being the bigger one, but also Central America or South America,” Sotomayor Hart says. “Depending on where you’re from and the kind of funds that you have, you know, that can affect your visa application.” READ MORE