International students are enrolling in American colleges in huge numbers, boosting the U.S. economy with tuition dollars and diversifying classrooms. But many of those students don't end up staying and working. Critics say that's because the U.S. isn't handing out enough work visas, which sends these talented grads home.
Growing up in Colombia, Felipe Spinel got a bachelor's degree and then worked for ten years in Bogota's struggling tech sector, saving enough money to study abroad. In 2010, Spinel was accepted into Boston University's two-year MBA program.
It's eight in the morning, and Debra Zhang is heading to work. She grabs her keys and umbrella, slips on her shoes, and steps on to Boylston Street in Boston's Fenway neighborhood.
Zhang is one of the more than 800,000 international students that attended American colleges and universities last year -- more than 46,000 of them in Massachusetts. And schools are expecting a spike this fall. This trend has implications both for international and domestic students.