According to One Nova Scotia, the group formed to measure the progress towards the goals set out in the Ivany Report, Nova Scotia is becoming an increasingly attractive place for international students.
According to the data, in 2011, only 4.1% of international students opted to stay in Nova Scotia after graduating. The data for 2018 shows that 12.6% are staying. That is a massive change and represents thousands of people and millions in additional economic activity.
A growing number of potential economic migrants are being attracted to study at Nova Scotia’s post-secondary institutions. More of them are also choosing to stay and build a life here. This is an opportunity to help combat the province’s demographic and economic challenges. As the number of enrollments rise, retention efforts can expand to accommodate the larger volume of potential economic migrants.
Nova Scotia is going to need more immigrants (both international and interprovincial) to address our demographic issues. This is a positive sign, but more still needs to be done.