Friday 2 July 2021 8:00 AM UTC
By A Staff Reporter
LONDON July 1: The UK Home Office on Thursday formally opened its new post-study work visa for international students, which would offer overseas graduates from India and other destinations the option to apply for the right to stay on for job experience at the end of their university courses.
The Graduate route visa, announced last year by UK Home Secretary Priti Patel, is now open for applications from this week and is expected to particularly benefit Indian students, who are known to choose their degree courses based on the prospect of work experience.
The Graduate route is designed for international graduates who have been awarded their degree from a recognised UK university to stay on and look for work for at least two years.
The National Indian Students and Alumni Union UK (NISAU) was among the groups that actively lobbied the UK government for such a post-study visa route.
NISAU is hosting an exclusive interaction on the UK’s new ‘Graduate route’, more popularly known as the Post-Study Work Visa. All international students, current and prospective, and those interested in finding out more about the Graduate route are welcome.
“This is a new immigration route in the UK requiring students to make a new application. We know you have a lot of questions – so make use of this unique opportunity to get answers straight from the Home Office and other domain experts”, NISAU called on students to join.
Lord Karan Bilimoria CBE DL, President of UK Council of International Student Affairs, President of the Confederation of British Industries,
Chancellor of the University of Birmingham
Harry Booty, UK Visas and Immigration, UK Government
Sanam Arora, Strategy Consultant and the Chairperson of NISAU
Specialist Immigration Lawyer
Expect to cover key questions including:
Who is eligible?
How to apply?
When to apply?
Where can I apply?
What can and can’t I do?
How do I make the most of this opportunity?
Where can I get help?
Many more questions on the post study work visa answered on Saturday 3rd July | 12:30pm BST | 17:00pm IST
Register now! Limited spaces available
The ability to have a period of post-study work in the UK has been a long-standing demand of the international, particularly Indian student community as well as the wider British Higher Education sector.
For the NISAU this has been a key initiative over the last decade, wherein we undertook a range of advocacy and lobbying activities to help bring the post study work visa back, highlighting the benefits not only to students but also to the UK on the whole.
These requests have been accepted by the UK Government, and July 1 2021 will see the launch of the Graduate route, providing a period of 2 or 3 years of post-study work leave in the UK. Based on the information available so far it appears to be a good visa option for international students looking to stay back in the UK after their studies, allowing them the chance to secure meaningful work experience. As a new visa type, there will be new rules and processes, so we hope that this session is able to help students get the answers they need.
The NISAU does not provide any immigration or legal advice nor should any communication be construed as the provision of any immigration or legal advice. All views are speakers’ own.
For the new route, international graduates must have completed an eligible course at a UK higher education provider with a track record of compliance with the government’s immigration requirements.
It is unsponsored, meaning applicants do not need a job offer to apply and crucially they can use a two-year period to stay on and look for a job. There are no minimum salary requirements or caps on numbers, allowing graduates on the route to work flexibly, switch jobs and develop their career as required.
A coronavirus concession on the date by which students must enter the UK to qualify for the route, if they started courses in 2020 and are unable to travel due to the pandemic, was recently extended.
Applicants who began their studies in autumn 2020 or in spring 2021 will need to be in the UK on a student visa by September 27 this year. Students beginning their course later this year or early next year will need to be in the UK by April 6, 2022.
This has been welcomed by Indian student groups in the UK, concerned about India’s categorisation under the red list of countries from where travel currently remains banned, making it compulsory for Indian students to quarantine at considerably additional expense.
The new route, part of the post-Brexit points-based immigration system, is pegged as part of the UK’s Global Britain message of attracting the best talent from around the world and covers all parts of the United Kingdom.
Anne Marie Graham, Chief Executive of UK Council for International Student Affairs, said: ‘We know that employability is a priority for international students coming to study in the UK.
“International students who are able to access this route will have the flexibility to apply for work in any sector or role that fits their skills profile, including self-employment without the need for employer sponsorship.” To apply under the new Graduate route, international students must have completed an eligible course at a recognised UK higher education provider at undergraduate or higher level. Students on the route will be able to work or look for work after their studies for a maximum period of two years, or three years for Doctoral PhD students.
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