Biola Named as a Top University for International Students by US News & World Report

International students are successfully supported at Biola, according to new list

Sep. 5, 2018 By Jenna Loumagne

Biola University is named as one of the “Top Universities for International Students” in a new list published this summer by US News & World Report. Due to the unique challenges international students face when attending college overseas, the publication evaluated National Universities in its annual Best Colleges rankings to determine which schools best support the needs of international students. Biola is one of 181 colleges in the nation to make the cut.


“It was truly a pleasant surprise to see Biola recognized as one of the 181 top universities for international students,” said Fitsum Mulat, director of international admissions. “As you can see from the way that US News and World Report presented what goes into the ranking, this recognition can be attributed to the work that various offices have done at Biola in making sure that international students are served well.”


At Biola, there are more than 50 countries represented within the global student body with the largest representations from South Korea, China, Indonesia, Canada, Singapore and Taiwan.


To create the list of “Top Universities for International Students,” US News used a methodology that considers “academic factors, such as the six-year graduation rate for international students, as well as social and cultural supports, like the availability of international student organizations.” According to US News, schools included in the list have a track record of serving their international student populations well including positive graduation and retention rates for international students, availability of English as a Second Language programs and grant aid to international students.


From 2013 to 2017, Biola’s undergraduate international enrollment increased by 38 percent. Biola has prioritized international enrollment through ensuring students are supported through the admissions process, student immigration and compliance, and transitioning into university life. In addition, Biola provides scholarships and help with financial aid and academic advising to ensure students are in the right courses to complete their degree.


US News asserts that “international students are even more likely to struggle with mental health issues than their American peers.”


One event exemplifying Biola’s dedication to international students success occurred August 27-29: Global student orientation. The three-day orientation precedes all-student orientation in order for global students to adjust to campus, the new culture, and learn about campus resources available to them. Many Biola faculty members and staff members are invested in mentoring and supporting students as well, according to Mulat.


Two recent developments have underpinned Biola’s service to international students. Last year, Biola launched the Biola English Language Program, which allows students who may not reach the required English proficiency level to access a Biola education. In addition, Biola’s Career Development department has increased engagement with international students so they are as equally informed and prepared to find a job post-graduation.


Biola was founded on the mission “to impact the world for the Lord Jesus Christ” and prioritizing international students has allowed Biola to build a global learning community that supports this mission and the school’s aspirations to build a cross-cultural community and extend Biola’s educational reach throughout the world.


“International students inform and enrich the global community that we are trying to build. The classroom experience is richer because a student from Sweden, South Africa, South Korea and Orange County are wrestling with complex matters from a global perspective yet coming to the solid foundation that a Biola education is founded upon, the Word of God,” said Mulat.


Learn more about Biola’s international admissions process.


Learn more about Biola’s Global Student Programs & Development department.


Written by Jenna Loumagne, manager of media relations. For more information, contact Jenna at (562) 777-4061 or

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