Advice

Published on Jun 7th, 2016 | by tefl

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Advice for international students living and working in the UK

Uprooting oneself from home, friends and family in order to pursue a career can be a difficult decision. However, there are many upsides, including a new world of possibilities and adventures that weren’t previously on the table.

Leaving a home country to study abroad is kind of like the halfway house, in that there are breaks from learning, summers off, and enough time to properly get the feet under the table and be at one with the culture before going after the graduate position, diploma in hand.

The UK is a wonderfully diverse nation, full of all sorts of different characters. This means that there is likely something that everyone can enjoy. Many inter
national students choose to study in the UK at least partly down to this, as well as the esteemed and prestigious universities that come high in the world ranking tables.

Coming out of a university with a degree is always likely to propel graduates into better, more suited jobs, but Portrait of pretty girl in library looking at camera with smilesome universities and colleges have better reputations than others, of course. Opting to take a course in one of these institutions can really elevate the stature of a candidate, and there may well be several types of teachings and degrees that are simply not available in one country for a variety of reasons.

Those who do come over will always find themselves welcome, and for those who arrive with nothing but a large backpack of clothes, a passport and some hopes and dreams, at least they can be safe in the knowledge that nearly all universities and higher education hotspots will have halls of residences for students to stay in. This form of accommodation often contains not just a bed but also access to other necessary amenities such as internet connection.

The other big plus side of these residences is that new students can all be in the same place and meet each other, making it easy to make new friends and acquaintances that can help each other settle into a new environment, and take away some of the immediate feeling of being so far away from home.

Those students who are studying on courses and looking to supplement this with additional work outside of their study may find that it all works a little differently from back home. Immigration laws will often mean that different visas will be required, depending on personal circumstances, and those looking for graduate positions may find that they must apply a little earlier for visas to make sure that if the application takes a while, it will not pass over any deadlines related to being in the UK.

Depending on how stringent or lenient the rules in a home country may be in terms of the work environment, it may be a possible shock if one does not expect such legislation. As an example, drug testing can be commonplace in some workplaces, especially for those that operate machinery and potentially dangerous equipment. An oral fluid lab test may well be carried out, so it is important to make sure to stay on the right side of the law.

International experience always looks fantastic on a CV, and showing a determination to seek out the best career path that may well derivate from the comfort zone is often considered a valuable aptitude to possess. It may also present the option to travel even further once the stay is over and important experience has been gained. The world presents so many opportunities that it seems silly not to make the most of it.

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