I find this claim that it is only the international students that add to the diversity of an MBA class to be a bit impetuous. Business schools do not have to put together a class that fulfills the mission of being diverse in national affiliation. If you look at the "American" students in any MBA class, you will find a significant group amongst them were either born and grew up abroad, had worked or studied abroad et cetera. So it isn't as if the international students are "rounding out" a class per se, and the argument that business schools will lose out on "diversity" if they do not take extraordinary steps to continue attracting international students sometimes just gets a rise out of me.
Business schools will obviously accept applicants who are best qualified to succeed in their program, irrespective of the citizenship they hold. How the schools make that decision, is also obviously very subjective and not based simply upon test scores or demonstrated academic excellence.
Therefore if there are schools elsewhere that offer a better ROI to international students than do U.S. schools, the international students should of course pursue those opportunities. But to suggest that by losing out on international students for reasons beyond the admissions committee's control, U.S. business schools will necessary forego cultural exposure to other parts of the world AND consequently adversely impact the "diversity" of an MBA class drastically is somewhat presumptuous.
One positive outcome from this could be that next year, admissions officers in the UE and E schools will be relatively more welcome to international students. If the withdrawals in the current year continue - it could severely affect the diversity in the b-schools.
Well first of all .. I didn't imply that the diversity in US b-schools is 'only' because of the international student body. Let's admit, the international student body does contribute to the diversity. Otherwise b-schools wouldn't be advertising 'More than 30% of our student body is international'.
Of course US schools or any school for that matter will forego cultural exposure to other parts of the world if there is a lack of international student participation, which will impact the class diversity. To argue otherwise would be meaningless, unless of course 100% of the applying local students have spent a significant portion of their lives in international territory, know and understand that culture, and are able to disseminate the cultural understandings to their peers.
In the land of the night, the chariot of the sun is drawn by the grateful dead