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Foreign student registration sets record for sixth straight year

STANFORD -- International student registration at Stanford has set a record for the sixth year in a row, according to figures compiled by the Bechtel International Center on campus.

A total of 2,660 non-U.S. citizen students enrolled at Stanford this fall, compared with 2,534 in 1990. The total includes 546 permanent residents and 2,114 students on non-immigrant (F-1 and J-1) visas.

Joining the custom of most other U.S. universities, Stanford this year for the first time counts only those students holding non- immigrant visas in its breakdowns by country and major.

As a result, China has replaced Canada in first place at Stanford with 206 international students, followed by Japan with 185. There are 177 non-immigrant Canadian students on campus, 162 from India, 145 from South Korea and 143 from Taiwan.

Forty-nine percent of the non-immigrant international students at Stanford are from Asian countries, 25 percent from Europe, 15 percent from the Americas, 6 percent from the Middle East and North Africa, 3 percent from the Pacific Basin and 2 percent from Sub-Saharan Africa.

Together, they represent 3 percent of the undergraduate students, 22 percent of the graduate students and 42 percent of the postdoctoral students on campus. They come from 84 countries.

The Stanford statistics reflect trends seen elsewhere in the United States. According to the Institute for International Education, total foreign student enrollment in U.S. colleges and universities in 1990-91 was a record 407,500, and nine of the top 10 places of origin were Asian countries. Students from Europe, Asia and the Pacific Basin increased, while those from Latin America and the Middle East decreased.

"The number of Stanford students from the Middle East has gone down drastically from their levels in the late 1970s," said John Pearson, director of the Bechtel International Center. "In 1980, Stanford had 91 students from Iran, and in 1991 we have 13.

"On the other hand, in 1979 there were only two students from the People's Republic of China, and today we have more than 200."

Stanford also has seen an increase this year in students from Eastern Europe - and from what was the Soviet Union. Eighteen months ago, when Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev visited Stanford, there was only one Soviet student on campus. Today, there are 14.

"I think the Soviet Union has been ready to do this for quite a long time," Pearson said. "They're now interested in direct exchange - it's just a matter of getting the money to come."

Engineering remains the most popular field for foreign students at Stanford, with 824 non-immigrant international students composing 26 percent of the school's total enrollment.

The School of Humanities and Sciences has 480 non-immigrant international students (11 percent of its enrollment); the School of Business, 155 (19 percent); the School of Earth Sciences, 86 (39 percent); the School of Medicine, 46 (6 percent); the School of Education, 44 (14 percent); and the School of Law, 25 (5 percent).

Majors with the highest percentage of non-immigrant international students include petroleum engineering, with 68 percent, followed by computational mathematics (56 percent), food research (47 percent) and geophysics (47 percent) and engineering-economic systems (46 percent).

There are 856 non-immigrant international students studying at the master's level and 712 at the doctoral level.

About 21 percent of non-immigrant foreign students - 450 - are women. Married students number 696, or about 33 percent of the total.

Individual country totals are as follows:

Asia: China, 206; Japan, 185; India, 162; South Korea, 145; Taiwan, 143; Singapore, 55; Hong Kong, 54; Pakistan, 18; Malaysia, 17; Philippines, 13; Indonesia, 10; Sri Lanka, 8; Thailand, 6; Nepal, 4; Bangladesh, 2; Bhutan 1; Mauritius, 1; Vietnam, 1.

The Americas: Canada, 177; Mexico, 43; Brazil, 37; Argentina, 13; Venezuela, 13; Colombia, 10; Chile, 8; Peru, 7; Trinidad & Tobago, 6; Costa Rica 3; Uruguay, 3; Guatemala, 2; Granada, 1; Guyana, 1; Jamaica, 1; Panama, 1.

Europe: Germany, 103; United Kingdom, 75; France, 51; Greece, 40; Switzerland, 38; Italy, 37; Spain, 27; Belgium, 23; Netherlands, 21; Sweden, 17; Soviet Union, 14; Norway, 13; Ireland, 11; Finland, 10; Austria, 8; Denmark, 8; Iceland, 7; Portugal, 7; Poland, 6; Yugoslavia, 6; Cyprus, 5; Hungary, 4; Romania, 3; Bulgaria, 2; Luxembourg, 2.

Sub-Saharan Africa: South Africa, 15; Nigeria, 6; Kenya, 4; Ghana, 3; Tanzania, 2; Benin, 1; Cameroon, 1; Ethiopia, 1; Sierra Leone, 1; Zimbabwe, 1.

Middle East and North Africa: Israel, 52; Turkey, 30; Iran, 13; Lebanon, 7; Saudi Arabia, 7; Egypt, 4; Tunisia, 4; Jordan, 3; Algeria, 2; Kuwait, 2; Iraq, 1; Syria, 1; United Arab Emirates, 1.

Pacific Basin: Australia, 43; New Zealand, 13.



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