A Win for Agent-Based International Student Recruitment | Inside Higher Ed

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The U.S. Senate passed legislation last week that would amend language in a veterans’ education act banning the use of commission-based international student recruitment by institutions that receive GI Bill funding. The REMOTE Act was already approved by the House of Representatives and will now go to President Biden for his signature.

Higher education groups had lobbied for changes to the veterans’ education law to allow for continued use of agent-based international student recruitment models. Although the use of agents paid on commission in international recruitment has been controversial over the years, it is an increasingly established and common practice. A recent joint survey conducted by the National Association for College Admission Counseling and the American International Recruitment Council found that almost half (49 percent) of the 294 colleges that responded used commissioned agents to recruit international undergraduate students.

NAFSA: Association of International Educators praised the passage of the REMOTE Act.

“The REMOTE Act restores the ability of U.S. higher education institutions to both serve military veterans and recruit international students utilizing incentive-based compensation agreements,” Esther D. Brimmer, NAFSA’s executive director and CEO, said in a statement. “At a time when U.S. international student enrollment is already on the decline and other countries are making gains in attracting global talent, the U.S. can hardly afford to limit the tools available to higher education institutions for recruiting international students.”

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