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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 UK Government has confirmed that the Graduate route will open for applications on 1 July 2021. Further details about the route can be found in the Home Office Graduate Immigration Route Factsheet.

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

The current work routes after studies available to Tier 4 students in the UK are the Skilled Worker, Tier 5 (Temporary worker) and the Start-up 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. 

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 2020 to 5 April 2021.

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 Senior Advisor
Tel: +44 (0)20 8417 7313