Opening a For-Profit or Not-for-Profit University?
Benjamin Franklin, one of the forefathers of America, probably said it best when he stated, "An investment in knowledge pays the best interest." This statement couldn't be more true when applied to investing in a university in the United States. As a foreigner, there are some distinct advantages you have when opening a university or college in the United States.
One of those advantages is that the United States has the largest economy in the world. This means that there's a lot of opportunity for your university to grow and thrive financially. Students from all over the world are looking to come to the United States to get an education and this is a market you can tap into. But as a foreigner, there are some specific requirements that you'll need to meet to open a university in the United States. For one, you'll need to know which states allow non-US residents to open their businesses in the state and you will only be allowed to open a C-Corporation (not an LLC or S-Corporation).
As a foreigner, you can apply for an Employment Identification Number and use your address outside the US but you should also expect longer processing times than it would for a domestic applicant.
Some of the biggest hurdles are often financial and logistical. Simply opening a bank account will require you to be physically present in the country. You will have to pay for a registered agent of service of process, which is a person or entity that can represent you and receive important communications on your behalf.
Finally and perhaps most importantly, you’ll need to know and comply with local laws. The laws in the US are likely quite different from those in your home country and failure to comply with regulations could lead to penalties and fines, or even suspension of your licenses.
While opening a university as a foreigner might be a challenging process, the rewards can be great. The United States has the highest rate of international students worldwide, that’s why it offers students one of the most diverse experiences while maintaining a high level of quality of education. To many international students, an American degree is their passport to a better and brighter future, and, although the demand for US education is very high, there is still room for many higher education institutions. This is a great opportunity for smart investors like you!
To learn more about opening a university or college as a foreigner, explore the links below. And be sure to check out our complete Starting a University ”Video FAQ Series”. As always, feel free to give me a call or Contact Us with any questions you may have. I’ve been helping clients establish universities in the US for over a decade, and I’m looking forward to helping you, too.