Thousands of Indian students applying to Canadian universities may no longer run the risk of a Tri-Valley University (TVU) repeat under a unique plan aimed at students concerned after recent instances of fraud abroad.
The Canada India Education Council (CIEC), which coordinates educational ties between the two countries, plans to launch iCARE, an agent certification process, this July ahead of the Fall 2011 academic session. Around 12,000 Indian students are currently studying in Canada.
Senior Canadian government officials have told HT that the federal government is backing the initiative that it hopes will help Canada emerge an alternate destination for Indian students seeking to study abroad.
“Students in India are worried about studying abroad after the TVU scam and the recent instances of fraud and race attacks in Australia. We believe that if we pitch Canada appropriately, we can show Indian students that our country is a very attractive alternative,” a senior Canadian official said.
The iCARE process will allow Indian students keen on studying in Canada to ensure that education agents they approach are certified, CIEC executive director Husain Neemuchwala said.
The CIEC — modeled on the lines of the United States India Educational Foundation (USIEF) — is particularly critical for Indo-Canadian education ties because Canada does not have a federal education department. Education is managed by each province. The CIEC is an NGO, but is supported by the Canadian government.
But Canada is keenly pushing its education as a major source of revenue — to be earned from foreign students. India at present falls behind China, the US, Mexico and a handful of other countries in the number of students it sends to Canada.