Goal 3

Retention of International Students

10% of foreign students stay in Nova Scotia (up from 5%).


Young Chinese woman holding tablet in middle of modern design agency Young Chinese woman holding tablet in middle of modern design agency

Goal Status

Progressing and Surpassing checkmark icon Progressing and Surpassing
Baseline: 5.1%
Target: 10%
Current: 12.6%
Bands

Current Situation

The gross number of international post-secondary students transitioning to permanent residency has been increasing since 2015 with significant gains in the last three years. 2018 surpassed 2017’s strong result of 9.4%, with 12.6% of foreign students choosing to stay in Nova Scotia post-graduation. This represents a historic high for the province while achieving the stretch target of 10% international student retention. There has been a significant increase in the number of international students studying in Nova Scotia as well as an increase in the number of people transitioning from student to Permanent Residency. We will need to maintain this pace of growth to achieve the target in 2024.

Year Rate Target Baseline
2005 3.60% 10.00% 5.00%
2006 6.00% 10.00% 5.00%
2007 6.20% 10.00% 5.00%
2008 7.50% 10.00% 5.00%
2009 5.70% 10.00% 5.00%
2010 5.30% 10.00% 5.00%
2011 4.10% 10.00% 5.00%
2012 5.10% 10.00% 5.00%
2013 6.00% 10.00% 5.00%
2014 5.50% 10.00% 5.00%
2015 3.30% 10.00% 5.00%
2016 6.90% 10.00% 5.00%
2017 9.40% 10.00% 5.00%
2018 12.60% 10.00% 5.00%

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What This Means

A growing number of potential economic migrants are being attracted to study at Nova Scotia’s post-secondary institutions. More of them are also choosing to stay and build a life here. This is an opportunity to help combat the province’s demographic and economic challenges. As the number of enrolments rise, retention efforts can expand to accommodate the larger volume of potential economic migrants.

Deep Dive

Read more detailed information about this goal by clicking 'Deep Dive'

Retention of International Students Deep Dive

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