From The Washington Post:
Globalization has made life easier for a lot of Americans. It's opened up doors for American companies abroad and allowed its citizens to buy products at bargain-basement prices. While there have certainly been drawbacks, Americans, on the whole, have had at least a fairly positive view of how globalization has affected their lives.
It's an admissions officer's dream: ever-growing stacks of applications from students with outstanding test scores, terrific grades and rigorous academic preparation. That's the pleasant prospect faced by the University of Virginia and some other U.S. colleges, which are receiving a surging number of applications from China.
"It's this perfect, beautiful island of people who are immensely motivated, going to great high schools," marveled Parke Muth, director of international admission at U-Va.
A decade ago, 17 Chinese students applied to U-Va. Three years ago, 117 did. This year, the number was more than 800 out of almost 22,000 candidates -- so many that admissions officers had to devise new ways to select from the pool of strong applicants.
Chinese students' growing interest in U-Va. is partly a result of the school's outreach and strong reputation. But even some schools that don't recruit in China have seen a rapid increase in applicants.
Until fall 2007, the number of Chinese undergraduates in the United States had held steady for years, at about 9,000, according to the Institute of International Education, which promotes study abroad. But that year, it jumped to more than 16,000.
Experts say China's increasing wealth, fewer delays in obtaining visas and technology that makes it easier for Chinese students to learn about U.S. schools have helped fuel the boom. It shows no sign of letting up.Read On
With globalization and its opportunities are a whole new set of challenges though.
I talk with Chinese students all the time. A huge percentage of them tell me that they want to go to the US to study. Chinese universities have very deep and significant problems. It makes sense that China's best students with the means to go abroad would want to get out of its university system.
A few years ago, going to America to study would've been a pipe dream for nearly everyone in China. But as China rises and more and more of its families have the means to pay for such an endeavor, this dream will certainly become more of a reality for Chinese students.
This increased competition abroad from Chinese students at American universities is one of the things that comes along with a more open and balanced world. It will make things more stressful for American students.
But America, being a largely meritocratic country, should embrace the idea that its universities should be filled with the best students. Even if those students come from China.