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Why Do Families and Prospective Students Use Agents?, December 2011 Update

Agents serve an important role in the advising of students bound for study abroad. Agents exist because the secondary school systems don’t provide college counseling. Most countries prepare their students for domestic university study by focusing on academics and preparation for the comprehensive board exams that drive student placement. For domestic admissions in Australia and the UK it is the “A level” exam, in China, the Gaokao, in India one of a number of regional standardized board examinations. For domestic students, it’s all about the board exam and offers from universities depend solely on those scores. Students take the test at the end of their 12th year, the scores are posted a month or so later and then begins the university matching process. Universities put out a range of admissions scores, applications made quickly thereafter. It is a mechanical process that has only one criterion for admission, the test score.

Due to these absolutely objective measures, there is no notion of “reach schools” or “safety schools.” Students don’t visit schools to see if they fit, the test score tells them if they’ll fit. The American philosophy of subjective admissions is truly foreign to these students, their parents and teachers and that’s where they look for external advice. Application components like personal statements, extracurricular activities and essays are not part of the domestic college search process and thus need explanation and interpretation, as is the most confusing thing of all – “test optional.” Students wonder, “If a standardized test is required for domestic admissions, what does it mean to have an optional admissions test?” And, “why don’t the American schools accept my board score for admission?”
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University Use of Recruiting Agents, December 2011 Update

With the 2011 annual AIRC conference and another ICEF workshop occurring in December, it is a good time to reconnect with the issues relating to the use of international recruiting agents and what is the current state of acceptance.

Officially, the use of agents for foreign students is allowed and for domestic students it is not allowed. The governing law of the land is Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, which defines regulations around Federal funding of student aid programs. Title IV states that its jurisdiction covers only domestic students and thus all regulations tied to incentive compensation and student eligibility are for domestic students only.
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How to Build an Overseas Brand Name for Your College or University

Looking at the Open Doors numbers tells us a great deal about brand names in college education. 20% of the international students in the USA are at 25 schools. None of these leading universities has a total enrollment of less than 20,000. Nine of these top ranked schools are in the Big 10 athletic conference, four in the Ivy League and three in the Pac 12 conference. Nineteen of the 25 play Division 1 football, 24 of 25 play Division I basketball.

Drill down a little further and you’ll see that 50% of the international students in the USA are at over 125 schools and 80% are at just over 350 schools. You can call these the sweatshirt schools, the ones that you see logos emblazoned on in Starbucks and malls and tourist hotspots worldwide.
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InternetCarbon is a consulting firm with specialties in new product development, sales and marketing strategies. The firm has particular expertise in Higher Education, eCommerce and Internet Marketing.

The driving force behind InternetCarbon is Mark Shay, a serial entrepreneur who has created, built and in several cases sold Internet-based and educationally-related businesses. The following is just a sampling of enterprises Shay brought to life:

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Mark Shay

The driving force behind InternetCarbon is Mark Shay, a serial entrepreneur who has created, built and in several cases sold Internet-based and educationally related businesses. Read more for just a sampling of enterprises Shay brought to life...

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Memberships and Organizations

Mark has just completed his term on the Board of Directors of AIRC - the American International Recruitment Council - an organization he is still very active with.  Mark is  a member of AIEA's Fund Raising Task Force.

He is an individual member or participant in the efforts of AIEA, NAGAP, NAFSA, Council of Graduate Schools, NACAC, AACRAO and UPCEA.