Economic impact of international students attending Athlone Institute of Technology to Athlone.
While studies have been published on spending and economic benefits of international students both nationally and internationally, there is still no evidence of a study being focused on only one institute, even in Ireland. Thus, this thesis only focuses on the international students at Athlone Institute of Technology. Literature from Ireland, Wales, Sheffield-based Universities and the United States are included in this thesis which shows that international students contribute money through their expenditure to the economy. However, it is worth acknowledging that this area still lacks knowledge. The study includes both European and non-European examples. Therefore, the purpose of this thesis is to understand the economic contributions brought to Athlone economy by international students including their spending, visits from family and friends and their contribution to businesses in Athlone from the perspective of business owners. International students spending were found to be surprisingly high in Athlone. Based on these findings there were a number of recommendations given to Athlone Institute of Technology and for future research. Data was collected using mixed method approach to obtain the relevant qualitative and quantitative results to investigate the ‘economic impact of international students attending Athlone Institute of Technology to Athlone’. Quantitative data was gathered through the distribution of on-line and off-line questionnaires to sixty two international students at Athlone Institute of Technology. Qualitative data was gathered using semi-structured interviews to gather information regarding international students’ spending and their impact on businesses in Athlone. The findings are presented and discussed within this thesis.
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