Plunging rupee triggers rise in scholarship requests

Plunging rupee triggers rise in scholarship requests
Published:  23 Jul at 12 PM
Educational organisations in India say the plummeting rupee has triggered a rise in applications for scholarships for overseas study courses. The American Alumni Association (AUA) says that despite the final date for scholarship applications for the coming academic year having passed, it is still receiving fresh ones every day.

AUA president Urvashi Devidayal said that students were panicking as they realised they might not have sufficient funds to complete their chosen study abroad programmes. The AUA is backed by major Indian companies and provides endowments to the tune of INR100,000 (£1,090) per student towards the cost of studying abroad.

According to The Times of India the administrators of the RD Sethna Scholarship Organisation had reported 250 students had applied for funds. Fund manager Farrokh Rustomji said the plummeting rupee had increased the cost of studying in the UK, the US and other popular study abroad destinations.

The Indian Chamber of Commerce, ASSOCHAM, says the devaluation of the rupee is expected to tack on an extra INR400,000 (£4,360) to the cost of the average undergraduate programme in the UK and the US. The rupee has dropped almost 20 per cent in value over the past year.

The lower exchange rate not only affects the amount Indian students pay in tuition fees at overseas establishments. It takes more rupees to pay for air fares, accommodation and day-to-day living expenses. Even well-to-do parents are encouraging their offspring to apply for scholarships or student loans to help them deal with the soaring costs.