PHILADELPHIA, March 2 /PRNewswire/ -- To continue its expansion into the United States, the world's largest student placement firm, IDP Education, has started counseling U.S.-bound students in the two Indian cities of Ahmedabad and Hyderabad. Company-owned counseling centers in seven other Indian cities are scheduled to commence U.S.-focused counseling by April, and the company expects to add four more throughout North Asia by the spring.
Joining the counseling center launch was Mark Shay, North America director of IDP Education, who led two information sessions in each Indian city. Says Shay, "More than 20 million people live in Ahmedabad and Hyderabad, and there is great interest in studying in the United States. Starting counseling in these important but little-represented cities is a demonstration of IDP's reach and overseas expertise."
Luna Das, IDP's national manager of U.S. counseling for India, believes the organization stands out because of its focus on the students' best interests, with counseling separated from the business end of the operation to avoid potential biases.
Says Das, "IDP counselors perform a thorough assessment of a student's academic qualifications, work experience, and extracurricular, social and sporting activities, and based on these criteria work to effectively match the student with a university that best meets his or her unique abilities, desires and needs. The counselor helps the student create a shortlist of universities, and if necessary choose an appropriate area of study, then assists the student with college and visa applications, how to write an appropriate statement of purpose and essay, prepare a portfolio, gather letters of recommendation, understand U.S. campus life, and more."
The goal, Das says, is to guide a student through to enrollment and safe arrival on campus.
Having placed more than 250,000 students into the Australia higher education system over the past three decades, IDP Education announced last May an expansion into the United States as a second destination for its professional student placement service. Since that time, more than 40 university partners with more than 3,000 degree programs have joined IDP's U.S. portfolio, indicating that the U.S. higher education community is continuing to further embrace the practice of international student recruiting. Recent partners include Duquesne University, Valparaiso University and Auburn University's graduate school.
IDP Education is credited with founding the original student recruitment model, and is responsible for one in five students currently enrolled in an Australian higher education program. The organization has promised that any services for the U.S. market will be additions to the Australia operation, adding new resources and procedures based on the current success but not pulling from existing resources. Trained counselors specific to the U.S. market have recently joined both Indian offices, and the company is expected to continue that formula until it has expanded to the rest of the 20 countries in which it has counseling centers.
Adds Harmeet Pental, IDP's regional director of South Asia, "The IDP team in India and South Asia is excited about the opportunity this offers students to avail services at world-class counseling centers and have a trained personal counselor help them through the challenging U.S. admissions process. IDP's experience over the past 40 years enables us to listen to and understand student needs and provide solutions that will lead to them being better placed."
During the recent launch, Shay reiterated company projections that 1 million foreign students will be studying in the United States by 2017, with 50,000 coming through IDP Education.
SOURCE IDP Education