There are university towns in the USA where investors from all over the world buy to rent, but usually the target market is new faculty and staff, not students.
It's not unusual for some, not all, landlords to prohibit students (at least undergrads) from renting their apartments because of hard partying and poor rent payment habits.
To my knowledge most of this investment is outside of the NYC metropolitan area. New investment in NYC has cap rates from 1% to, rarely, 6%, elsewhere 6%+ or more can be obtained by careful investors.
Licensed Real Estate Salesperson
New York, NY