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Staying in the UK

Staying in the UK

Staying in the UK

Whether you are looking to stay in the UK to work after graduation or you want to go into further study, the Careers Centre is here to help you.

Preparing for working in the UK

Preparation is the key to success. If you are an international student it is important that you start your planning early. Some graduate roles are advertised up to a year ahead.

  • You need to try and get work experience if you have not already got it. Whilst your degree and your extra-curricular activities give you lots of skills, it is very important to UK employers that you have proven ability in the workplace. Nearly half the recruiters in the 2020 High Fliers survey said that graduates with no work experience have 'little or no chance of receiving a job offer' from them. This could be paid or unpaid, working part time or doing an internship, or simply taking an active part in student society - anything that helps you develop your skills counts and will be highly valued by employers. 
  • Investigate visa requirements using the UKCISA website and keep up to date with the regulations. The International Student office may also be able to help if you need specialist immigration advice. 
  • To learn about up to date working visa situation, listen to a range of recorded webinars with work employment lawyers and specialists that took place during Global Careers events.
  • Build a network of useful UK contacts from your course, work experience and employment sectors that interest you. During your time at university you can use your networks to explore different careers and industry sectors and get insider tips to help you get the job you want. You may also find out about vacancies that are not widely advertised.
  • Commercial awareness is very important. You will gain a better understanding of your sector during your work experience, through researching organisations and using your networks. The Careers Centre also runs lots of events where you can meet employers and ask questions. You should keep up to date with industry trends and current issues through social media and searching for news items. Look at individual companies to find out what they do, who their clients are, their current projects and what makes them stand out from their competitors. Where could you add value?
  • Also make sure to research the Global Careers page which has lots of useful info and recorder webinars for international students who would like to stay in the UK
  • Make sure to regularly explore MyCareer for a range of excellent vacancies and job opportunities. You will normally find between 1,000 and 4,000 vacancies on daily basis. 
  • We are also running a series of employer led events including successful 'Global Careers' events inviting range of local and international employers who are employing international students. To learn more and to book, visit MyCareer now. 
  • Take every opportunity to practise you verbal and written English skills as employers will look for this in your applications and interviews.

New post-study work visas for International Students

In a major boost for international students, the UK government has announced a new two-year post-study work visa, expanding opportunities for talented international students to build successful careers in the UK.

From 1 July 2021, international students who have successfully completed an undergraduate or master’s degree will be able to benefit from two years’ work experience in the UK upon graduation, through the new Graduate Route. Students who complete their PhD will be able to stay for three years.

University of Leeds International Office has lots of useful information about the Graduate Route and can provide advice and support if you have any questions.  

Also for more information please visit the official GOV.UK page (open as PDF)British Council website or UKCISA webpages and listen to UKCISA Questions and answers on the new Graduate Route webinar from March 2021

What if I need to be sponsored in order to stay in the UK?

Below are some excellent tips and resources if you are not eligible for the graduate level visas.

  • Identify organisations that may be interested in recruiting someone with your unique skills. Most graduate employers will be happy to accept applications from international students but some may not be able to sponsor visas for you as they may not be on the Sponsor Register or the jobs they have may not meet minimum salary requirements. As the sponsor register doesn’t allow to search for jobs in a particular industry or geographical location, you may wish to use the UKTierSponsors website to help you identify companies in your desired sector/industry, their location as well as direct link to their website. Always check the cross-reference the company information with the official Sponsor Register.
  • It is also a great idea to refer employers you are planning to talk to about our Employing International Students webpage. This is particularly aimed at employers and includes an easy to understand overview of immigration rules.
  • Make sure to regularly explore MyCareer for a range of excellent vacancies and job opportunities. Search for (in the vacancy type) TIER 2 Visa Sponsor to identify graduate level TIER 2 opportunities.

Making job applications in the UK after graduation

Writing job applications for the UK labour market can sometimes be very different from the experience you had in your home country. It is very important that you become familiar with the British style of writing CVs and applications, as you will face the same criteria as UK students when applying for jobs.

At the Careers Centre we can provide you with examples and help you create effective CVs and applications for the British job market. Consider the aspects that make you unique amongst other candidates. Your language skills, your previous work experience in your home country as well as your knowledge of a non-UK market can prove very interesting to UK employers. It is very important that you can talk about the skills you gained during your work experience, focusing on the needs of the company you are applying to.

Student Circus   

Set up by 2 recent international graduates, Student Circus advertises vacancies in the UK that carry sponsorship for non-EEA students. If you are looking for a TIER 2 graduate level job or an internship make sure to create an account (by using your e-mail address) and search through thousands of opportunities. Student Circus are also attending our Careers Fairs and presentations so check our events page to see when they are on campus next. 

Listen to a range of recorded Student Circus webinars on our Global Careers page to learn about using Student Circus to help you identify job or internship in the UK (as well as overseas) and to get latest advice and tips on working in the UK. 

Further study in the UK

If you want to continue your studies in the UK, you can drop in and discuss your ideas and plans with us.

Make sure you visit Further Study section of our website to help you understand your options and research possible sources of funding.

Some useful links that will help you assess your opportunities:

University of Leeds Postgraduate Study

Prospects guide to postgraduate study in the UK

British Council Guide to postgraduate study in the UK