The UK government has announced a proposal to create a new route to allow students to stay in the UK to work after they have completed their degree. This route is not yet confirmed and it must be agreed by parliament before it becomes part of the UK Immigration Rules. The information below is from the Home Office fact sheet about the Graduate Immigration route.
The proposed route is as follows (subject to change):
- International students who complete an undergraduate degree or higher at Queen Mary with Tier 4 immigration permission or Student immigration permission at the time of application will be eligible.
- Those graduating in Summer 2021 or later can apply under the route, those graduating before Summer 2021 will not be eligible.
- The graduate route will allow students who have completed a Bachelor's or Master's degree to stay for up to two years to work at any skill level, or to look for work. Those who have completed a PhD will be granted permission for 3 years.
- There will be a visa application fee and students will have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge for the additional time.
- UKVI have confirmed that students will normally be expected to undertake their studies in the UK to be eligible for the Graduate route. However, if students are required to either continue their current studies or commence a new course by distance or blended learning due to Covid-19, they will still be eligible to switch into the Graduate route on a concessionary basis if they spent some time studying outside the UK. Students will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK before 6 April 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies in the UK.