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COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted higher education, admission delays: Rachit Agrawal

COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted higher education, admission delays: Rachit Agrawal
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has affected billions of students across the world.


COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted higher education, admission delays: Rachit Agrawal

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has affected billions of students across the world. The health crisis has impacted new admissions, examinations, student placements, internships and student mobility. Students, those who could afford, were left with no choice but to accustom themselves to the “new normal” of online schooling.

Rachit Agrawal, Co-Founder, AdmitKard in an interaction with MyBigPlunge discusses how the higher education has been hit and what has been done to overcome the pandemic:

What is the COVID-19 pandemic’s impact on the education industry in terms of higher education?

If we are talking specifically about the higher education sector then certainly it was hit. A lot of universities had to delay their application procedures and admissions due to covid-19 outbreak. On the other hand, the aspirants were facing difficulties and uncertainties as their career were at stake. The situation took a little time to get tackled, and universities had to explore digital mediums to on board and conduct classes with the students.

The pandemic and travel restrictions have brought higher education for foreign students to a grinding halt. When will this sector recover?

A lot of countries have opened their borders for students. Even students here are ready to travel to pursue on-campus opportunities. Some of the countries are also offering extended visas to students to attract them. The sector is moving towards speedy recovery.

What measures have been taken to cushion the impact?

The universities floated the session through e-learning till things got better. However, a lot of courses could not be pursued with the e-learning medium alone as they were more about practical on ground learning. As the borders opened, universities offered extended work visas, facilities, and added opportunities to attract foreign students.

Is the recruitment of students for foreign universities ongoing? How has this been possible?

Education is closest to heart for Indian parents and hence even we witnessed 2 waves of Covid, we never saw student enthusiasm going down. Studying abroad, students have moved from offline way of counseling to online way of counseling as they couldn’t go out with entire country being under lockdown. We have seen high % of digital adoption in the pocket of India where digital counseling penetration was low. Universities also have been very supportive in managing the entire process smoothly and providing relevant waivers, with respect to, tests or documents which student were not able to collect due to lockdown. Recruitment has been smooth with the support of entire eco system being supportive.

What has been the loss like for those companies/agencies handling student admission placement? Please elaborate

Due to the pandemic when there were uncertainties for students, they were seeking support from agencies and different platforms that could guide them better. Amidst this, there was only an increase in the number of queries that agencies received.

Will international universities/colleges be taking in foreign students anytime soon? Which countries are open?

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International universities are already taking foreign students. Canada, UK, US, Ireland are open and students have been traveling to these countries over last couple of months. Some countries which are closed are Australia, New Zealand and Singapore but they have also given an option of starting the course digitally and then joining the university once borders are open.

What is the outlook like for the industry?

Overall the industry looks very bullish. With class 12th results out and borders opening up we are seeing more and more students looking for global opportunities. With lot of students who couldn’t travel last year, they are also planning to travel this year and hence over next 12 months we should witness even higher number of students traveling.

AdmitKard is a venture capital-funded edtech start-up that simplifies access to higher education. It boasts a robust technology platform to make the entire application process effortless and to enable aspirants to apply from their comfort zone.

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