National Indian Students and Alumni Union UK requests PM Sunak to make no changes to Graduate Route visa

The MAC’s recommendation to retain the Graduate Route came after a review which included consultations with a cross-section of key stakeholders including educational institutions and students
NISAU UK has been a staunch advocate for the rights and welfare of Indian students in the UK
NISAU UK was invited to give evidence to the MAC as part of this review(Pic: NISAU UK and EdexLive Desk)

National Indian Students and Alumni Union UK (NISAU UK), the representative body of Indian students and alumni in the UK, has issued a fervent appeal to Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, urging the government to safeguard the Graduate Route, they shared via a press statement.

This call comes after the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) recently found no evidence of abuse of the Graduate Route and recommended its retention in its current form.

What is the graduate route?

The Graduate Route allows international graduates to stay in the UK for two years post-graduation (three years for PhD graduates) to gain work experience.

This policy is seen as critical to maintaining the UK’s attractiveness as a destination for international students and supporting the UK’s higher education sector and economy.

The letter

In a comprehensive letter addressed to PM Sunak, NISAU UK's Chair Sanam Arora covers the following points:

- Economic contributions of international students

- Public support for the Graduate Route

- Potential role of international graduates in addressing skill shortages

- Enrichment of educational experiences for home students

- Enhancement of Britain's global influence and soft power

- Promotion of research and innovation in the UK

- Critical importance of universities as a British strategic asset.

She also addresses the misconception of reducing international graduates to ‘Deliveroo visas’, highlighting that these students are highly invested in their UK education and net positive contributors to the UK.

The letter is addressed to the Rt Hon Rishi Sunak, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom; and calls on him to make no change to the Graduate Route, nor any adjacent changes that may make the UK a less welcoming or less attractive destination for international students.

Recipients also include Foreign Secretary The Rt Hon Lord Cameron; Education Secretary The Rt Hon Gillian Keegan; India's External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar, UK Exports Minister Lord Offord; UK International Higher Education Champion Sir Steve Smith; Co-Chair of the APPG for International Students Lord Karan Bilimoria CBE DL; Scott McDonald, Chief Executive of the British Council and Vivienne Stern MBE, Chief Executive of Universities UK.

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