A new study has revealed that nearly three-quarters of overseas students studying in the UK and staying there after graduating are employed in graduate-level positions. The study, completed in 2022 and involving students from 77 countries, found that 72% were employed in industries ranging from business and engineering, to IT and education. There was also a wide range of organisations offering jobs to international students.
This is a completely different picture to the one represented by the Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, who has claimed that overseas students are not contributing to the UK economy. She stated that they are often in low-paid and low-skilled jobs- this survey shows that simply is not true. A large majority are employed and are in highly skilled jobs that contribute to the economy.
However, this doesn’t tell the whole story. The survey also shows that 25% of international students surveyed were unemployed. As a result, calls have been made for greater awareness from employers about how they can employ international students and what the process entails. Barriers to employment mainly include navigating visas and understanding the process of taking on overseas students within an organisation. Nevertheless, this shouldn’t prevent students from staying on after graduation and working in the UK.
International students offer a wide range of skills that are needed in the UK to fill shortages in the workplace. The United Kingdom is in an increasingly competitive business marketplace and needs to stand out in order to maintain its position as a leading business venue. Finding talent from all over the world can only support the UK’s mission to be world-leading for enterprise and innovation.