Diplomatic Rift Won't Halt Indian Students Journey to Canada
Rhonda L. Lenton, President of York University in Toronto, in her five-day city tour, addresses the safety of Indian students in Canadian universities amid the India-Canada diplomatic tension and assures that the dispute won't affect collaborations or student security.
Are Indian students studying in Canadian universities safe amidst the recent India-Canada diplomatic tension?
Here is an assurance from Rhonda L. Lenton, President and Vice-Chancellor of York University in Toronto, Canada. She firmly states that the ongoing dispute between India and Canada will not hinder the collaborations and partnerships in the field of university education between the two nations, nor will it pose any security risk or difficulties for Indian students studying in Canadian universities.
During her five-day city tour in India, where she aims to strengthen collaborations between universities and attract more Indian students to York University, Prof. Lenton emphasizes the importance of global university cooperation for the betterment of education and research, regardless of political situations.
In an exclusive interview, she was put on the spot and was asked some questions by the media. But, guess what? She handled them like a pro! Would you like to know what she said?
Here are some of the questions she faced, and her responses - take a look!
1. Are you providing special support for Indian students during these times?
Yes, we're fostering a strong student network and offering support to all international students, including those from India, for current and those planning to study at York.
2. Have you seen more Indian students post-pandemic?
Yes, we've seen a steady increase in Indian graduate students, and we're working on expanding graduate programs to meet the demand. In fact, that’s our joint initiatives, such as the memorandum of understanding for academic collaboration that we have with O.P. Jindal Global University, are helpful and we are looking at building pathways for Indian students such as a 2+1 program that can be studied at two universities in the two countries.
3. Is Canada's post-education work option a big draw for Indian students?
Absolutely, the work option is a significant advantage for students to stay on after their degree. However, beyond that high-quality education, diversity, and a welcoming community are additional factors that together make Canada a destination of choice for international students.
4. How do you address housing concerns caused by large numbers of Indian students?
We're on the ground in India, providing information, guaranteeing first-year residency, and offering support for financial and immigration issues. Many of our domestic students also stay on campus at the Quad residency and it is important for them to be exposed to internationalism; which happens when they live alongside international students. For us, the percentage of international students that we have on campus is important and we are now building a new residency for upper-year overseas students.
5. What are the popular subjects for Indian students, and are scholarships available?
Indian students study a wide range of subjects, from engineering, and liberal arts to STEM fields. Depending on the courses – Ph.D., undergraduate, or graduate – there are different resources available including fellowships, bursaries, scholarships, and teaching assistantships.
6. Is the visa process for Indian students smoother this year, considering the huge backlog of visas faced last year?
We've advocated with the Canadian government, and while things are better this year, we still offer solutions for international students if visa delays occur, such as online courses to prevent losing a full year.
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