How to boost your UK, Canada, and Australia study visa prospects with hybrid programs – The Financial Express

The Financial Express

By Abhinav Mital, 
In the past few months, the Australian Home Department has rejected more than 600 student visa applications from Haryana and Punjab for falsifying documents about their academic credentials and finances. It has led to increased scrutiny for all Indian students applying for student visas in Australia.
This issue is not limited to Australia alone. Popular Indian higher education destinations like the UK and Canada are denying more visas than ever.
India’s denial rate for student visas has risen to 57% as of 2020, up from 34% in 2018. A startling 60% of all Indian student visa applications were turned down by Canada last year in a mere few weeks. Meanwhile, the UK also has an 8.25% rejection rate.
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According to information shared in Parliament by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in July 2021, there are over 2,15720 Indian students in Canada, 2,11,930 in the United States, 92,383 in Australia, 55,465 in the United Kingdom, and 20,810 in Germany. Though the Bureau of Immigration (GOI) maintains data on all students abroad on student visas, there is no database available for students who have applied for visas.
Visa denial rates have never been so high, even though most consultants and enablers acknowledge that visa refusals have always existed. There has also been an overall delay in the issuing of study visas to genuine students due to a few bad eggs. It is causing both financial loss and mental agony to the students and parents.
Struggles of Students, Officials, and Embassies
MEA reportedly called the ambassadors and deputy chiefs of missions of eight countries, including the UK, US, Canada and Australia, and asked them to expedite the visa application process for Indian students.
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Since the issuing of a visa is considered a sovereign decision, Indian officials typically do not intervene in foreign countries’ visa matters. They were, however, compelled to intervene due to the “extremely high” number of requests from Indian students.
At the same time, the missions in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, and Germany are under more strain because of the high demand for education in these countries. These embassies are constrained by a lack of resources and personnel. It indicates that most of these delays in student visa applications aren’t due to a lack of will but rather to a lack of capability.
However, rejections, like the ones from Haryana and Punjab, typically happen due to the candidate’s profile and their inability to prove two things:
The latter is usually testified using financial assets in India, such as property, but the former is much harder to judge, as past academic scores in India are not a true indicator of future academic success in an overseas education system.
In such a scenario, a hybrid program may be the ideal option for individuals who want to study in their preferred foreign education hub.
Hybrid Programs Could Firepower Students’ Academic Profiles
With a hybrid program, students can complete their first year or semester of coursework remotely before attending a university campus full time to finish their degrees. It is possible for students in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, and Australia to gain the credits they need through online classes provided by a number of Indian companies. With the help of such approaches, students can easily enroll in the colleges of their choice.
It would help students demonstrate their authenticity and commitment in the face of high visa denial rates from India. When students take part in their course online, they can also learn the academic skills they need to succeed in foreign colleges later on. To put it another way, students who enroll in hybrid programs have a better chance of getting into their preferred university and obtaining a visa.
In truth, colleges also face a major issue when it comes to attracting international students, particularly at the undergraduate level. Finding genuine students and those who are adequately prepared to succeed in an international setting are two of the biggest obstacles. Before a full-time enrolment, a distance learning course can assist institutions in selecting the right students. There is a direct correlation between the quality of undergraduate students and the quality of graduate students at universities.
The Hybrid Program: More Benefits Over the Traditional Routes
Students who want to study abroad can benefit from a hybrid program in a number of ways, including visa acceptance and a smoother university application process.
With a fast-track course, students can complete their one-year study in less than 26 weeks, compared to the traditional 40-week time frame. Not only does it allow students to accelerate their degree, or make up for any time lost in their studies, it also gives them more time to complete their visa and travel formalities.
Students can save lakhs of rupees on their education because they can complete a portion of their course from the comfort of their own homes. Plus, a hybrid program allows students to design their own path to get an international degree. For instance, students can take part in a variety of hybrid programs from different universities and courses in order to narrow down their options.
Studying abroad provides learners with a wealth of opportunities for growth on both a personal and professional level. Added benefits include learning about local culture, history, and people, as well as networking with students from around the world. Visa application denials should not stand in the way of such an experience. A hybrid program is one of many ways students can ensure that nothing stands in their way of attending their dream institution.
(The author is Co-founder, The WorldGrad. Views expressed are personal and do not reflect the official position or policy of the FinancialExpress.com.)
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