Viet Nam Ranks 6th Among Countries Sending Students to the US


According to the latest SEVIS by the Numbers quarterly update (PDF download), prepared by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP), part of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), there are 1.23 million international students with F (academic) or M (vocational) status studying in the US.  (Note:  Unlike the IIE annual Open Doors report, the SEVIS data encompass all levels of education.

Based on data extracted from SEVIS on 7 November 2016, one day before the US presidential election, the international student population in the US increased 2.9% compared to November 2015.  Viet Nam was one of three major sending countries in Asia with a YoY increase (4.5%) – after  China (5.2%) and India (14.1%). 

The top ten countries are as follows: 

1.  China:  387,987
2.  India:  206,584
3.  South Korea:  74,818
4.  Saudi Arabia:  62,075
5.  Canada:  31,151
6.  Viet Nam: 30,180
7.  Japan:  26,502
8.  Taiwan:  24,096
9.  Brazil:  20,989
10. Mexico:  18,996

Spotlight on Viet Nam

Viet Nam continues to distance itself from Japan and Taiwan and will likely surpass Canada in the coming year.  There are Vietnamese students in all 50 states, ranging from 6 in Alaska (#50) to 6,212 in California (#1).  There is even one (1) studying in Puerto Rico.  

As you can see from the graph below, 83.1% are enrolled in higher education, including 10.1% in English language programs, 60.3% undergraduates (slightly more at four-year institutions, a recent trend), and 12.7% in graduate programs.  The secondary enrollment, i.e., boarding and day schools, continues to increase. It now stands at 3756, 12.4% of total Vietnamese enrollment. 


The gender is virtually unchanged with about 10% more females than males.  This breakdown is noticeable in advising and student participation in various activities related to study in the USA. 


This clickable map for every sending country (see link to Mapping SEVIS by the Numbers below) provides information about the number of students in every state, plus Guam and Puerto Rico.  The bluer the state, the more students from that particular country.  As you can see below, the bluest states for Vietnamese students are California, Texas, and Washington, which rank #1, #2, and #3, respectively. 


For more detailed information by country, including gender breakdown, education breakdown by level, and student population by state, check out Mapping SEVIS by the Numbers.  It features an interactive map that illustrates trends and information on international students studying in the US, which can be viewed at the continent, region, and country level.

For those keeping a close watch on the possible negative impact of a Trump presidency on international enrollments, the SEVIS quarterly updates are the most useful and timely source of information. Stay tuned for the spring term update!


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