Internationalizing U.S. Colleges and Universities while Decreasing the Trade Deficit: the positive Double Whammy: A Case Study
Vest, Boyer and Moses’ article builds a case for the internalization of American institutions for higher learning. The studies explain the various benefits that may arise due to international students coming to study in the United States. Vest, Boyer and Moses recommend that rather than encouraging American students to visit other countries, higher learning institutions should look for ways to attract foreign students. Other than promoting cultural diversity and cultural sharing, the increase in international students may result in decreasing the trade deficits as these international students spend money during their stay. It is, however, important to identify any problems and opportunities may affect the internationalization of higher learning institutions.
Competition, Economic, and Cultural Environment
A situational analysis involves the investigation of both the internal and external environment; therefore, understand a business’ competition, customers, and capabilities among others. The economic environment in the country is currently recovering from the recession experienced between 2008 and 2009. The stabilization of the economy has resulted in an increased opportunity for the internationalization of universities and colleges. Although America has resources to support its population, an increase in the number of international students may result in overpopulation; therefore, straining to the available resources. People from different culture characterize America. These various cultures have created a diverse cultural environment, which would promote the easier internationalization of students. The main competition against higher education institutions in the US is institutions in developed countries such as Germany and the Great Britain. Institutions in Asian countries, including China and Malaysia, also provide competition as they have recently begun internationalization efforts. Partnerships with establishments in these countries may help to reduce competition as well as result in collective benefits for institutions in both countries.
Porter Five Forces
Porter’s model explains that any organization is influenced and affected by five factors. The porter’s model allows managers to understand the market context; therefore, develop a competitive edge over rival organizations. The first factor considered in Porter’s model is the customer’s power. Students account for the primary consumers in the higher education. Analyzing a student’s power may involve considerations on if the prices for education is too high. If education is too expensive for most international students to afford, they may have less purchasing power. The second force in Porter’s model is the supplier’s power. The provider in this instance is the number of higher education institutions in the United States. The supplier is more powerful as they are concentrated.
The third force that may affect America’s competitive edge is the availability of completive rivalry with other countries. Due to more countries seeking to internationalize their studies, new competitive rivalries in education are developing globally. This diversity has also resulted in an intensification of the competition. The fourth force is the threat of new entrant into the market. With the recent globalization efforts, more and more countries are aiming to internationalize higher education. This provides more competition against the America’s higher learning institution. The fifth force is a threat to substitute programs. An important substitute product in higher education institutions is the availability of online courses, which are relatively cheaper than attending the physical school.
Strategic Marketing Issues
Strategic marketing is the process employed by organizations to differentiate themselves from competing organizations. To ensure the success of internationalization efforts, higher learning institutions in the U.S should ensure they are different from organizations in other countries. One of the strategic marketing issues is the matter of the product. Institutions of higher learning in the United States need to ensure that the education quality delivered is of the best quality. Offering higher quality education as compared to competitors will ensure a differentiation of America’s institutions from other institutions. The type of promotion employed may also result in universities and colleges in America differentiating themselves from others. Advertising using social media sites may provide differentiation from other institutions. Another strategic marketing issue is the subject of price. Studying in foreign countries is quite expensive. Reducing the cost of education and offering incentive may result in American higher education institutions differentiating themselves from other universities and colleges in other countries.
Management and policy issues also affect an organization’s ability to differentiate itself from other businesses. Universities and colleges in America have made several management decisions with the aim of making them different from those in other countries. Some of the policies introduced include offering ESL classes to international students. The offering of ESL classes allows a reduction of communication barriers. Another issue that has resulted in America’s institutions being different from other competing university and colleges is the introduction of financial aid for international students as well as funding for international recruitment program. These strategic marketing techniques have allowed U.S institutions to remain competitive against other countries targeting international students.
Alternative Courses of Action
There are several alternative actions that universities would take to ensure successful internationalization efforts. These include:
Opening campuses in offshore schools in other countries.
The introduction of dual degree programs.
Forming international networks among institutions
Establishment of online courses to promote internationalization
Recommended Course of Action
The alternative courses listed have their individual benefit as well as several shortcomings. A recommended course of action is the introduction of dual degree program as well as the forming of international networks with other higher learning institutions.
Justification of Recommended Course of Action
The introduction of joint and dual degree programs will result in a student gaining a degree that is recognized and approved by two universities or colleges located in different countries. The introduction of joint degree programs would result in a collaboration where American schools would offer one diploma, with a foreign university offering a different course not offered at the American universities. Joint degrees would allow a sharing of skills between the two institutions as well as more diversity. The use of joint and dual degrees would result in American universities partnering with universities from third world countries. Such partnership may lead to increased cultural diversity in American institutions as well as a learning and improvement point for the African schools. The joint degree programs result in several benefits for both the institution and the students. One of the major benefits is that students become culturally sensitive by working with scholars of different nationalities. This cultural sensitivity results in graduate students of dual and joint degree programs being more employable. Dual degree programs are also a source of income for universities and colleges. The joint degree program provides institutions with a chance to access a differentiated source of revenue.
Vest, Donald, Lori Boyer and Charles Moses. "Internationalizing U.S. Colleges and Universities while Decreasing the Trade Deficit: The Positive Double Whammy." International Journal of Education Reearch (2014): 177-182. Web.