US colleges attracting fewer new students from abroad

A new report finds that fewer international students are heading to U.S. colleges.

The number of newly arriving foreign students fell by 7 percent in fall 2017, marking the second year of declines after at least 12 years of growth.

The findings come from the Institute of International Education and the State Department.

Officials behind the study primarily blame sharper competition from other countries including Australia and Canada.

But some schools contacted by The Associated Press say the political climate in the U.S. has made students abroad feel unwelcome.

Most of the losses come from Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Mexico, while China and India continued to send large numbers.

Although new enrollment fell, the total number of international students grew slightly as more stayed for temporary jobs after graduation.

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