In a bid to attracting more individuals to go to the UK for higher studies, a new two-year post-study work visa route has been created that hopes to attract at least six lakh international students by 2030.
British Deputy High Commissioner to India Jan Thompson, talking about this new option, says that Indian students will be able to stay in the United Kingdom for two years to find work after they graduate. Present visa rules allow most international students pursuing bachelor’s and master’s degrees to stay and work for only four months after course completion. Those students pursuing their studies at 27 universities on a pilot scheme can stay for six months.
Earlier during Theresa May’s term as home secretary in 2012, the UK ended the two-year post-study work visa, and this led to a huge drop in the numbers of international students from India.
Reinstating this work visa will mean that students can stay and work in the UK at any skill level for a period of two years. Once they find a suitable job, they can switch to skilled work.
British Council welcomed the move, saying that it is a welcome development for both Indian students and UK education institutions alike. Most international students are looking to work abroad after completing their course of study, and allowing them a period of two years in which to look for a suitable job will attract more students to sign up for a degree from the UK.
This visa route requires a separate application, payment of a fee and immigration health surcharge. Graduates who find a suitable job and meet the requirements can switch to skilled work, and this can be a route to settlement.
This visa will be available to students in the 2020-2021 academic intake.