The implications of Brexit on student life

03 Mar 2020

Brexit studentsThe effects of Britain leaving the European Union continue to linger on, not just in the UK and the European Union, but across the globe. With the two sides due to hold trade deal talks later this week, many will be wondering how the implications of Brexit will affect them personally. Here’s a closer look at how Brexit will impact those attending colleges and universities, or are undergoing international student mobility programs. 

International students will still be welcome in the UK. However, it is still advised to check any universities website to get a better understanding of its stance on Brexit. Unpredictable changes to visa regulations may interfere with student plans. 

The British Council, the UK’s international organization for cultural relations and educational opportunities, also provided specific advice for EU students in Britain, including the immediate repercussions EU students in the UK will experience, visa requirements, as well as loan eligibility for Erasmus+ applicants. 

From another perspective, a piece from University World News explored whether Britain will remain an attractive destination for international students. Although there are concerns in this area, figures show that there has been a “softening” of students’ views towards Brexit between now and 2016. 

Earlier this year, the UK government also introduced new two-year post-study work visas, designed at encouraging students to remain in Britain after completing their studies. It was also aimed at widening opportunities for talented international students. 

UK Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “The new Graduate Route will mean talented international students, whether in science and maths or technology and engineering, can study in the UK and then gain valuable work experience as they go on to build successful careers. [...] It demonstrates our global outlook and will ensure that we continue to attract the best and brightest.” 

The introduction of the Graduate Route, also referred to as the ‘Post-Study Work visa’ arrived following the implementation of a new fast-track visa for scientists as well as curbing limitations for PhD students who are easing into the work visa field. 

This could also help those sitting for MBA degrees and business schools, appealing to foreign business students who wish to work in the UK after completing their studies. According to the Financial Times, UK institutions have resisted a worldwide drop in MBAs, suggesting that issues related to Brexit have not dissuaded potential business students from studying in the UK.  

There was a 59% increase in postgraduate degrees in UK business schools, and a rise of 75% in applications from international students. “Talent will flow to places where there is opportunity,” said Bill Boulding, business school dean and chair of the Graduate Management Admissions Council (GMAC) board. He claimed that British business schools are perceived to be a smarter choice that lead to better opportunities for jobs and return on the investment. Returns tend to be better than USA, despite the latter having more expensive tuitions on offer.