Applications from non-EU students to study at Irish universities has surged. It is thought that the increase is a result of fears over Brexit. In addition, there has been a significant increase in US students applying to Irish universities. It seems that the election of Donald Trump may be the reason why. As well as the US, most non-EU applications are from India, China and Canada.
Non-EU applications at University College Cork jumped by 40 percent. UCD and Trinity College Dublin have also had increases. Foreign applications are up 26 percent at UCD.
Patrick Prendergast, Trinity College Dublin provost, said Brexit may make students look at Ireland as an alternative to the UK.
“Where students might have thought of the UK only, they are now hedging their bets and applying not just to the UK, but to other English-speaking colleges,” Mr Prendergast said.
UCD president Andrew Deeks has warned that universities may limit the number of places available to Irish students in favour of international ones if the Government does not increase funding.
However, while UCC president Patrick O’Shea agreed that third-level institutions were experiencing pressure, he ruled out denying places to Irish students.
“[At UCC] we’re not going to admit international students at the expense of Irish students, nor will we admit them simply for money. This is an opportunity to focus on quality and build the capacity of the system,” he said.
Irish universities are likely to receive more applications from domestic students too. The number of Irish students choosing to study in the UK has dropped by 18 percent.