Experiencing the UK Graduate route: India, master's degree

Date:Jul 2023
Topic(s): Graduate route, Recruitment, Student employability, Transition
Type(s): AGCAS Case study

The Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services (AGCAS), a member of UKCISA’s International Student Employability Group (ISEG), has captured the experiences of international graduates seeking employment in the UK after graduation in a series of case studies.

Who are you?



Nationality / country of origin


Current visa

Graduate route

Are your expectations of your Graduate route visa being met?

Strongly disagree

University, level of study and programme of study

University in the West Midlands

Higher degree, mainly by taught course (eg MA, MSc, MBA)


How many roles have you applied for since leaving university?

Over 50

Current activity


“The job market is extremely tough and employers expect employees to stay for a long time.”

Thoughts on your visa 

The application was self-explanatory and it was easy.

I understand that the Graduate route visa doesn't necessarily guarantee employment in the UK and it gives a fair chance at employment, when ticking the box of right to work.

The job market is extremely tough and employers expect employees to stay for a long time. If the employer doesn't offer a visa sponsorship after the Graduate route visa expires, it makes them doubt hiring the candidate.

Support and development 

I gained support from the university careers service, including having an appointment with a careers advisor, receiving CV feedback and practising recruitment activities such as interviews and going to assessment centres. I attended employer events, skills enhancement sessions and careers fairs. I gained access to job vacancy listings.

The Careers in Business team at the University of Birmingham is very helpful to the students and they offer end-to- end support for candidates. They have experts in the field and offer exceptional lifetime career services.

Since university, I have taken up courses on LinkedIn and Coursera to enhance my technical skills, as this could give me an edge over UK applicants.

“I have taken courses to enhance my technical skills.”

Employer knowledge and attitudes  

They have information on visas, but employers favour UK candidates more than international candidates.

My impression is that employers are not willing to sponsor a visa for candidates, especially for administration or marketing roles.

What advice would you give to current international students seeking graduate employment in the UK?  

Apply for the visa and keep searching for jobs.