Graduates from 50 prestigious universities can now apply for work visas in Great Britain.
At the start of the new visa program on Monday, the British government stated that its aim was to bring “the smartest and best” into the country. If the application is successful, undergraduate and postgraduate students should be allowed to stay in the country for two years, and doctoral students should be allowed to stay in the country for an initial three years.
The list of 50 universities includes 20 American universities – including the elite universities of Harvard and Yale – some from Singapore, Hong Kong and China. From Switzerland, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) is involved in Lausanne (EPFL) and Zurich. Visas are several hundred pounds and compulsory health insurance.
This choice is also subject to criticism. For example, Christopher Trisos, a meteorologist at the University of Cape Town, criticized the practice as “deeply unreasonable” in the journal New Scientist. With the exclusion of African universities, many highly qualified graduates with knowledge in promising fields such as climate or food security have been dropped.
The country’s choice reflects the UK government’s shift away from the EU to Asian countries and the United States.
The Conservative government in London has a strict immigration policy from Brexit and wants to allow only the elect into the country. Visa options for winners of the Oscars, Nobel Prizes and similar awards were introduced last year, but no applications were received for the first few months.
“Due to the uniqueness of the prizes that qualify for this route, we do not expect a higher number of applications compared to other routes,” the British Home Office said on Monday. The government does not want to provide definitive current numbers of applicants.
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