Thursday31 July 2014

Immigration rules hit part II students

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Overseas architecture graduates must earn over £20,000 or leave the country

Foreign architecture students will need to earn at least £20,000 a year if they want to stay in the UK once they have graduated.

The new rules, which come into force on April 6, are expected to affect overseas part II graduates the most because of salary variations from region to region.

David Gloster, the RIBA’s director of education, said: “The RIBA will emphasise this concern, using its research to argue that the immigration salary threshold for post part II placements must be in line with norms for remuneration in the profession as a whole.”
The new rules are part of the government’s plan to cut net immigration — the numbers entering the UK less those leaving — to less than 100,000 by 2015.

It has long seen overseas student visas — those issued to people from outside the EU — as being used as a cover for work. Immigration minister Damian Green said: “In the past, too many students have come to the UK to work rather than study and this abuse must end.”
In 2010, student visas were issued to 238,000 out of 591,000 immigrants.

Gloster said part I graduates would be less affected, saying: “Post part I graduates on their year out are not interns. From an immigration standpoint, overseas students on their year out may retain their status as students as work placements are permitted for which there is no minimum threshold.”

Overseas growth areas for recruiting students include China, India and South America. The head of Greenwich University’s architecture school, Neil Spiller, previously vice head at the Bartlett, warned that students from these places would be hit.

“The students at the Bartlett, doing their part IIs, 85% of them were from overseas,” he said. “We probably have the best architectural system in the world and some of the best practices in the world. That’s why they come here.”

An alternative to the £20,000 threshold will see “graduate entrepreneurs” allowed to remain if they can prove they have attracted £50,000 of investment for a small business venture.

The government has drawn up outline guidance of the rule changes but will unveil more detailed plans next month.



Readers' comments (33)

  • Mike Duriez

    This should apply to domestic students, too. They should be forced to either (i) work in Tescos or (ii) go abroad, rather than earn less than £20K in the UK.

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  • If it does affect overseas Part II students, it means they are far underpaid in this country.

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  • 20k...what a meagre amount...surely after 5 years you should be earning this!...

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  • Sebastian Cuff

    Splendid to see that underpaid foreigners will be replaced by underpaid locals, what-ho? When I was on the slopes in Gstaad recently I met some jolly decent but impoverished local architecture graduates. They were complaining that the starting salary of 70,000 francs or so meant they had to have parental handouts to afford a decent quality ski week. Bad show, what?

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  • zecks_marquise

    Once again this is just political posturing. The majority of economic migrants in britain are from the EU so this rule does not apply. As for the bartlett students from further afield, if they can afford £15k tuition fees and a flat in kensington, i doubt they will struggle finding £50k of 'investment'

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  • kee kee: this is a revelation?

    atleast once we have kicked out all the oversee's bartlet students our wages will increase due to demand. Sounds like a good idea!!!

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  • Why are 'Bartlett overseas students' being targeted here?

    Do you guys know that Bartlett belongs to UCL? Its the same with Westminster, Cambridge, or whatever. Bartlett is not a private school.

    John Mortis, if the only way you can get a job is if these 'overseas Bartlett students' get kicked out of the country, I guess your competence should be questioned, because by default, you should have an advantage by being local, language wise and culturally.

    Whats next, kick out all foreign players in the premier league? talk about protectionism.

    Once you judge people by where they are from rather then their skills, you're simply going to weaken the profession. At tough times like this, its a very short sighted approach that will hurt the profession in the long run.

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  • this is good in a way!!!!
    show how many students working for low pay after part II. Best move by Immigration Dept. than RIBA who failed to do anything about cheap labour in architecture...:)
    hope they will apply for qualified architects too.....:)

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  • indeed, these overseas individuals in barlet should watch out.... the Immigration Dept are a knocking on your door..

    frankenstein, you seem upset with the idea that barlet overseas students are being 'targetted'? are you by chance from beyond the deep blue borders?

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  • Frankenstein, judging people by their skills is all very well, if that is supposed to be the case the why the hassle from ARB for anyone without a UK Part 1,2, 3 or a EU Full qualification wanting to get on the register?

    The playing field has been less than level for a long time.

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