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Webinar: Bucking the trend: How US schools can grow Chinese student numbers



In a more competitive and volatile higher education sector, U.S. universities and higher education institutes are facing new challenges to Chinese international student recruitment. But some US educators are looking forward to future growth thanks to long view planning targeting the critical Chinese student demographic.


We talked to US educators about the game-changing strategies that are helping attract and retain Chinese international students. Dennis Sullivan from Indiana University-Purdue University and Margie Tanner from the University of Tulsa talk with Sinorbis on the trends and tactics making waves in recruitment. In this webinar, our panel discusses: 


- The latest data and research on the changing needs and preferences of Chinese international students.
- The opportunities and challenges facing US educators looking to recruit more Chinese
- How to leverage an omnichannel approach to better reach Chinese students.
- What has worked – and what hasn’t – in the new recruitment landscape

This session was facilitated by

Elva Darnell

Elva Darnell
Head of Communications & Content, Sinorbis

As Head of Content and Communications, Elva is responsible for making sure Sinorbis’ content and media presence connects with and benefits our current and future clients.

Elva’s career has seen her live and work from Japan, India, Hong Kong, and Australia. Prior to joining Sinorbis, Elva headed the Chamber of Commerce in Industry WA’s content team, where she was responsible for some of CCIWA’s most successful content initiatives, including its COVID business resources website, and the expansion of its knowledge base series.

Previously, she managed one of The Wall Street Journal’s key editorial initiatives in Asia, ‘The Financial Inclusion Challenge’. In addition, she worked as multimedia producer for the Journal on critical news stories and features. She has also worked in the Australian Broadcasting Corporation’s newsrooms in a variety of roles, including chief of staff, journalist, and producer.

Meet the speakers

Margie Tanner
Margie Tanner
The University of Tulsa


Margie is the sole Admission Counselor for international undergraduate applicants at The University of Tulsa. Prior to this position Margie worked at InitialView in Beijing China as an interviewer for international applicants to U.S. colleges and universities. Margie spent a cumulative 5 years in China as a student, and earned her Master of Arts in International Studies from the Hopkins-Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies from Johns Hopkins University and Nanjing University. dmission Counseling.

Desmond Kohn


As Head of Partnerships at Sinorbis, Des works closely with partners and clients to understand the strategic role China plays in their business and define a digital marketing approach to meet their goals. With a background in programmatic and digital advertising, Des has a deep knowledge of digital marketing in both the western and Chinese digital ecosystem.

Dennis Sullivan
Dennis Sullivan
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis

Dennis Sullivan serves as Senior Assistant Program Director of Graduate Admissions & Recruitment for the School of Informatics & Computing (SoIC) at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). His work primarily involves recruiting and admitting academically qualified graduate students to SoIC. He previously joined IUPUI in 2020 as the Assistant Director of International Admissions where he focused on international student recruitment and marketing for the entire university.