International students who will attend the University of Limerick this academic year are worth €15m to the mid-west region according to new figures examining their spending compiled by Education in Ireland (www.educationireland.ie ). This year more than 2200 overseas students will come to study at the University of Limerick, the largest number in the University’s 40 year history.
This €15million figure is based on student spending estimates of between €7,000 and €12,000 in one year, this does not include tuition fees paid to the University of Limerick, according to Josephine Page, Head of the UL’s International Education Division.
“The benefit is spread across the mid-west, with many international students visiting attractions in Kerry, Clare, Cork and Galway at the weekends. In addition, many students have parents and friends who will come and visit, so the real value of such students visiting may be as high as €20m,” she said.
The University of Limerick now has the largest Erasmus exchange programme of any university in the country, with 400 Irish students going abroad annually, as well as international students coming to study in Limerick. New figures show that of the international students planning to come to the University of Limerick this year, some 496 come from Europe on European exchanges. A further 1056 students have come to UL to study a full degree programme, either at undergraduate or postgraduate level; 150 are on exchange programmes from non-EU countries and more than 500 are US or Japanese visiting students. The figures also show that students from more than 100 countries have visited the mid-west in 2012.
“International students are warmly welcomed on campus and make great contributions to the internationalisation of the UL campus and our local area, which is one of the strategic goals of the University. These students bring an international dimension to the classroom, connecting our students to the rest of the world. UL has the largest Erasmus programme in Ireland, we send more students overseas than any university in Ireland with one in three UL students spending a semester either working or studying overseas, which adds greatly to their experience,” said Professor Paul McCutcheon, UL Vice President Academic and Registrar.
The University of Limerick has achieved multiple firsts in a recent International Student Survey. The survey which involved over 5000 International students currently studying across the seven Irish Universities voted UL as the number one University in providing the Best Student Experience, Best Student Support and Warmest Welcome in Ireland.
The International Student Barometer™ survey was undertaken by independent research group i-Graduate and involved 238 institutions worldwide including the seven Irish universities. Across the four surveyed categories of ‘Living’, ‘Support’, ‘Arrival’ and ‘Learning’, UL was voted as having the best overall Living Experience in Ireland and the 5th in the world.
UL further excelled by being voted the most supportive University for International students who voted the Support Services as being the best in Ireland. UL was additionally deemed to have the ‘Best Multi-Cultural Teaching Experience’ in Ireland by the students surveyed.
UL also scored first out of 238 institutions world-wide in the categories of ‘Social Activities’, ‘Opportunities to experience Irish Culture’, ‘Social Facilities’, ‘Accommodation Office’, ‘Clubs & Societies’. The following UL supports were also highlighted for exceptional merit; International Office, Learning Support, Language Support, Learning Spaces, IT Support and Catering.
Independent research group, i-Graduate are partners with 1,300 of the world’s leading universities, colleges and schools, plus governments and government agencies, across 24 countries.