More than 94,000 foreign students are studying at Iran’s universities, 24 percent (27,000 students) of whom are studying at public universities, a deputy minister said, Trend reports citing IRNA.
Hashem Dadashpour, the deputy minister of science and the head of the Student Affairs Organization, made the remarks on the second day of the conference of heads of universities and higher education centers in Tehran on Friday, noting that enrolling international students is one of the main priorities of Minister of Science, Research and Technology Mansour Gholami, and that President Ebrahim Raisi underlined the need for absorbing foreign students.
Some 107 universities possess the certificates to enroll international students, Dadashpour said, adding that the ministry is mostly focusing on enrolling students from Iraq and Afghanistan.
The Iranian universities have enrolled 56,000 students from Iraq and 33,000 students from Afghanistan, and the remaining 5,000 are from other countries.
Admission of students from Africa and Latin America has been very low, he warned, saying that only 284 students from Africa and 17 others from Latin America have been registered at Iranian universities.
On the admission of foreign students last Iranian calendar year (March 21, 2021, to March 20, 2022), he noted that universities in Qom, Mashhad, Urmia, Esfahan, Mazandaran, Kordestan, Tabriz, Ahvaz, Sabzevar and Yazd have been top higher education centers in absorbing foreign students.
Some 99 percent of international students pay tuition fees, while one percent rely on scholarships, the official mentioned.
The head of the Student Affairs Organization also underlined that some 27 institutes have been qualified to absorb foreign students so far and that 20 others are going to get permission to pave the way for enrolling international students at Iranian universities, so the number of these institutes is scheduled to reach 150 by the next year.
Iran plans to increase the capacity of absorbing international students to 250,000 within the next three years with the aim of being ranked among the top 10 countries in terms of providing foreign students with higher education, Dadashpour said.