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Students want to stay in Rotterdam – survey

Nearly two-thirds of international students in the Netherlands’ second city say they want to stay in the country after graduation, according to a survey by a European student magazine.

The Rotterdam-based university welcomed at least 6,000 international students in 2019. Photo: Flickr/ Roman Boed

"After four years, you start missing the sun"

The Erasmus Magazine, produced by the Erasmus University Rotterdam, conducted a survey among its 6,000+ international students (half of which were from outside the EU, it specified).

“They assume it will be hard or very hard to find a job”

While 60% of respondents told the magazine they would stay in the Netherlands after they completed their course, the remaining 40% split equally between those who wanted to leave the nation and those who were unsure at the time of asking.

Although it can be a challenge for international graduates to find work in their adopted home country, one respondent told the student publication the Dutch work ethic and environment is a key reason for staying as it is”focused more on collaboration and creativity”.

But students recognise the difficulty of finding work, the survey also confirmed. At least 70% of students surveyed said they thought it would be “slightly hard” or “very hard”.

“Over 80% of them indicated that they assume it will be hard or very hard to find a job that is in line with their degree,” EM reported.

But it’s not all about work, the respondents explained. One Vietnamese student told the magazine weather was a motivator in going back to their country of origin.

“I know it sounds ridiculous, but after four years, you start missing the sun,” they said.

Another classmate added their wish to return home was inspired by wanting “to put [their] newly acquired knowledge to good use there”.

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