TRU sees surge in international registration, up 900 students from last year

Int'l enrolment surge at TRU

Thompson Rivers University is seeing a surge in international registrations, with the total international headcount increasing by more than 900 students compared to last year.

In a report going to TRU's senate on Monday, TRU President Brett Fairbairn said international registrations have shown a 27 per cent uptick since last year. International students now make up 49 per cent of the university's on-campus student body.

As of Aug. 27, international enrolment had grown by 929 registrants and 3,014 course registrations compared to the same date last year, excluding trades programs.

Meanwhile, domestic registrations are flat, with only 11 fewer registrants and 10 more course registrations compared to the same time last year.

Despite growth in registrations, international applications and admissions have decreased by 10 per cent and 20 per cent respectively, excluding the university’s nursing, trades and law programs.

Domestic applications and admission have remained steady, dropping two per cent and three per cent.

New international student registrants have increased by 13 per cent.

“While certain high-volume international programs have halted applications early, international registrant numbers have grown, partly due to expedited study permit processing by the IRCC,” the report reads.

In an effort to keep international headcount to the goal of 4,000 students, applications for TRU’s post-baccalaureate business program, bachelor of computing science and graduate certificate in educational studies were closed early. According to the university, 4,425 international students are currently registered.

“Initiatives encouraging new and continuing students tor register early this year contributed to an early boost in registration numbers,” the report states.

“While course registration activity continues to show growth over last year, the margin of that growth is shrinking as the fall term approaches and registration activity slows.”

The total on-campus headcount, both international and domestic, has increased by 918 students to a total of 9,010 this year, excluding students from trades programs.

In January, Fairbairn told TRU’s senate sagging domestic enrolment numbers were being buoyed by strong demand from international students.

International students made up nearly half of TRU’s on-campus student population during the last winter semester.

Fairbairn’s report will be presented to the university’s senate on Monday.

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