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Working in the UK after your studies

International students graduating from a UK university can apply to stay in the UK to work once they have finished their studies. With central London just 30 minutes away by train, you are within easy reach of a wide range of opportunities.

Non-EU students

Your eligibility to work in the UK after you complete your studies will depend on whether you meet the requirements for any of the schemes that the government operates.

There are a number of schemes for international students from outside the European Economic Area. These include:

UK Graduate Immigration Route – Post Study Work

The Graduate Route launched on 1 July 2021.


Students must:

  • Be in the UK on a valid student visa that has not expired, and have studied at least the last 12 months of their course on that student visa;

  • Apply only after being informed they have been awarded their degree; and 

  • Only after receiving a confirmation email from the compliance team that the Home Office has been notified of their eligibility which includes their CAS number.

If your visa expires before you receive your official results you will not be eligible to apply to switch into the Graduate Route.  You would have to leave the UK before your visa expired.

Students cannot apply for the Graduate Route from overseas.

To be eligible to apply you must be in the UK and have a valid Student Visa or Tier 4 visa and have received your official results confirming they will be or have been awarded before you can apply to switch into the Graduate Route. If you are completing your course in January 2024 you will not receive your official results until March 2024. You must wait until after that date to apply.

After you have been awarded your degree, the compliance team will notify the Home Office and send you an email with your CAS number.

If you have been officially financially sponsored by your Government, or an officially recognised international organisation in the last 12 months, you must obtain a permission letter from this sponsor giving their consent for you to remain in the UK under the Graduate Route.

You will also require your current passport and Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) card.

The Health Charge for each applicant is £624 a year (£1,248 for 2 years and £1,875 for 3 years). There will be the additional cost of the visa application which is £700 per applicant (2 years £1,948 and 3 years £2,572).

There is a £55 discount in the visa application fee for CESC nationals. The list of eligible countries can be accessed here.

Dependants are allowed, providing they are already in the UK as a PBS Student Dependant.

Kingston University must confirm your eligibility to apply for the Graduate Route to the Home Office, and you will be notified when this task has been completed.

If you have received your results and meet all the requirements and are ready to submit your visa application, and have not received a confirmation email, please email the compliance team at to confirm your eligibility has been sent to the Home Office before you submit your visa application. If you submit your visa application before Kingston University confirms your eligibility your application will not be processed.

Below are links to the Guidance and the visa application. You are strongly advised to take the time to read the Guidance in addition to reading all the information on this page about the Graduate Route.

Graduate Route Caseworker Guidance >

Graduate visa: Apply - GOV.UK ( >

The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) has also published information on this new immigration route.

New Start-up route

Start-up visa

From 4 June 2020 any graduate who was sponsored for their studies by their government or an overseas organisation in the last 12 months must obtain a permission letter to remain in the UK and switch into the Start-up / Innovator route or to apply from overseas for the Start-up route / Innovator route.

You must have £1,270 in savings to prove that you can support yourself and you must have held this in your personal bank account for 28 consecutive days before you apply for the Start-up route. Unless you have been living in the UK for the past 12 months.

Visa application fees to apply/switch in the UK:  £493 (8 weeks) £993 (Priority 10 day) £1,293 Super Priority (24 hrs). Please add £19.20 for your biometrics.

Health charge: £624 per year.

Visa application fee to apply from overseas: £363.

Kingston University has been allocated 25 General Endorsements for the new Start-up route to be allocated from 6 April 2021 to 5 April 2022.

The first step of the process is to complete an interest form. to register your interest for this process.

All applicants must join the Kingston University Bright Ideas to start-up programme.

You can register for the programme here:

For further information please contact Dwain Reid:

Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) has been expanded into a new Start-up category, which is for people looking to set up a business in the UK.  The new Start-up category opened to applicants on 6 April 2019. 

  • Applicants do need to be Kingston University graduates and do not require any initial funding.
  • Business ideas must be innovative, viable and scalable.
  • Satisfy the English language requirement, to Level B2.
  • Applicants must be endorsed by a recognised body.
  • Successful applicants will be granted two years' leave.
  • Successful achievements in the Start-up category will enable applicants to switch into the Innovator route.
  • The £50,000 investment required for the Innovator route will be waived.

New Innovator route

You can apply for an Innovator visa if:

  • You are endorsed by a relevant business sponsor;
  • You have £50,000 to invest in your business from any legitimate source;
  • This investment is waived if the applicant is switching from the Start-Up visa; and
  • Satisfy the English language requirement, to Level B2.

Further information is available on the UKVI website for all routes:

For further information and assistance with your Start-up visa application in the UK  please contact the Student Immigration Advisory Service at Please refer to the Start-up route in the subject field and include your full name, nationality and KU ID number in the body of the email.

Contact us

Student Immigration Advisory Service
Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 7313