News Brief

Why Is US Favouring Indian STEM Students Over Chinese

Kuldeep Negi

Jun 25, 2024, 12:18 PM | Updated 12:18 PM IST

Joe Biden (left) and Xi Jinping (Representative Image).
Joe Biden (left) and Xi Jinping (Representative Image).

US Deputy Secretary of State Kurt Campbell on Monday (24 June) advocated for welcoming more Chinese students for studying humanities rather than sciences due to security and technology access concerns.

Campbell also expressed concern about the low number of American students pursuing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields.

He also emphasised the importance of recruiting more international students, especially from India, for these fields.

The Deputy Secretary's remarks come in the backdrop of strained US-China relations, leading to increased scrutiny and suspicion towards Chinese students.

"I would like to see more Chinese students coming to the US to study humanities and social sciences, not particle physics," Campbell told the think-tank Council on Foreign Relations, India Today reported.

Campbell also addressed the issue of the China Initiative introduced by the Trump administration to combat Chinese espionage and intellectual property theft.

He noted that the initiative had ended under the Biden administration amid criticism of racial profiling of Asian Americans.

Campbell said US universities had made "careful attempts" to support continuing higher education for Chinese students, but had also been "careful about the labs, some of the activities of Chinese students".

"I do think it is possible to curtail and to limit certain kinds of access, and we have seen that generally, particularly in technological programmes across the US," he said.

Campbell said some had suggested that China was the only source to make up for the shortage of science students.

"I believe that the largest increase that we need to see going forward would be much larger numbers of Indian students that come to study in American universities on a range of technology and other fields," he said.

He attributed difficulties in sustaining academic, business, and non-profit sector ties to actions by Chinese officials.

Campbell highlighted concerns among foreign executives and philanthropists about personal security in China, which he said had led to wariness about long-term stays in the country.

Also Read: Madhya Pradesh: Archaeological Survey Of India Finds Statue Of Lord Vishnu In Northeastern Part Of Bhojshala

Kuldeep is Senior Editor (Newsroom) at Swarajya. He tweets at @kaydnegi.

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