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UK launches new visa for world’s top graduates


Students from top universities around the globe, while still in their early stages of careers, can now apply for short-term visas to allow them to work and stay in the U.K.

The U.K. government announced that people have been admitted to the country who graduated in the past five years from any of its eligible universities. listed on its websiteIf you are eligible, you will be allowed to apply for the U.K.’s “high potential individual” visa.

Two-year visas will be given to successful applicants, and three-year visas will be available for those who have a PhD. If they are eligible, graduates who have been granted an HPI visa can also switch to long-term employment visas.

The U.K. allows graduates’ spouses and their children to apply for admission or remain with them.

Graduates will require a passport or another travel document to prove their nationality and identity in order to apply. All are eligible, regardless of nationality and where they were born. The applicant will need to show proof that they speak English at a minimum level “B1”, where native speakers can understand them.  

The application fee for the visa is £715 ($904), along with £210 to verify that their qualification is valid, or £252 if they’re applying from the U.K.

In addition, applicants will have to pay a health care surcharge, so that they can use the U.K.’s National Health Service, which is usually £624 for every year they’ll be in the U.K. Applicants will also have to prove that they can support themselves by showing they have at least £1,270 in their bank account, though this is subject to exemptions.

If they are applying from abroad, applicants will find out if their application was approved within three weeks. It takes 8 weeks for those who have been in the U.K. already and want to switch visas.

Based on rankings of universities around the globe, this list includes eligible colleges. The 2021/22 list of eligible universities is here.

List of 2021 colleges that have a ‘high potential individual’ visa

  1. California Institute of Technology (Caltech) — U.S.
  2. Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) — Hong Kong
  3. Columbia University — U.S.
  4. Cornell University — U.S.
  5. Duke University — U.S.
  6. Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL Switzerland) — Switzerland
  7. ETH Zurich (Swiss Federal Institute of Technology) — Switzerland
  8. Harvard University — U.S.
  9. Johns Hopkins University — U.S.
  10. Karolinska Institute — Sweden
  11. Kyoto University — Japan
  12. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) — U.S.
  13. McGill University — Canada
  14. Nanyang Technological University (NTU) — Singapore
  15. National University of Singapore — Singapore
  16. New York University (NYU) — U.S.
  17. Northwestern University — USA
  18. Paris Sciences et Lettres – PSL Research University — France
  19. Peking University — China
  20. Princeton University —  U.S.
  21. Stanford University — U.S.
  22. Tsinghua University — China
  23. University of British Columbia — Canada
  24. University of California, Berkeley — U.S.
  25. University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) — U.S.
  26. University of California, San Diego — U.S.
  27. University of Chicago US — U.S.
  28. University of Hong Kong — Hong Kong
  29. University of Melbourne — Australia
  30. University of Michigan-Ann Arbor — U.S.
  31. University of Munich (LMU Munich) — Germany
  32. University of Pennsylvania — U.S.
  33. University of Texas at Austin —  U.S.
  34. University of Tokyo — Japan
  35. University of Toronto — Canada
  36. University of Washington — U.S.
  37. Yale University — U.S.

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