Amity University’s plan to expand into U.S. and the controversies surrounding it

One of the largest universities in India, Amity University has announced that it would open a new campus in the United States of America. The announcement came with the purchase of a campus in New York and a proposal to buy two more campuses in Massachusetts. However, the move is not free from controversy, as state officials have expressed reservation on the quality of education.

It must be remembered that the trend is not in favour of opening campus in the U.S. but the other way around. This is due to high infrastructure costs involved in setting up of college in the U.S. as well as a stringent regulatory mechanism.

The U.S. is a global leader in education. Amity University, on the other hand, was established in 2003 in Noida and has since then expanded to create a global network of educational conglomerates. Right now, Amity has multiple campuses in India, with centres in England, China, South Africa, Dubai, Singapore and Mauritius.

It has paid $22 million to St. John University in Long Island, New York City, which was selling its branch in Long Island to move to a smaller location. The century-old-campus located in a sprawling 170-acre campus would be handed over to Amity in 2017 when it would begin operations.

Amity has also announced that a deal to buy New England Institute of Art, a for-profit college near Boston, and one of its sister schools, the Art Institute of New York City, has been struck. This was revealed according to paperwork filed by the university in the state of Massachusetts.

However, commenting upon the deal, which requires approval from state education department before it can see the light of the day, the Massachusetts attorney general Maura Healey stated that, “We are very, very sceptical about this.” In what may come as a setback to Amity, he has also been asking the state education department officials to block the sale.

Reservations are also being expressed due to dismal performance by Indian Universities in the latest world university rankings in which not even a single university from the sub-continent was able to secure a position.

Amity has stated that it aims to attract students from abroad by playing the US card, which is also a big factor when it comes to choosing a university. Scholars have also expressed concern that the university is more similar to a for-profit college than the traditional 4-yr university.

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