The deadline for the next Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa application round is currently being finalised, and will take place in November 2017. If you would like to find out more, please register your interest in the scheme.
Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) Visa
The Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa is an exciting opportunity for non-European students to extend their stay in the UK after graduation to establish a business. You will need to secure a letter of endorsement from UEA, who will assess whether you have a genuine and credible business idea or entrepreneurial skills, before sending the visa application. Successful applicants will be granted a visa initially for one year, with the option to extend an additional year providing all requirements are met. If you want to launch a business in the UK, then this your chance.
For the purpose of UK Immigration Rules, ‘business' refers to all enterprises: sole-trader, partnership, or company that is registered in the UK.
Graduates who engage with Student Enterprise prior to applying are significantly more likely to be successful in securing endorsement. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you meet with the Student Enterprise team to discuss your idea before you apply. You can book an appointment by visiting EnterpriseCentral or calling 01603 592142.
What is a Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) Visa?
- The Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa is issued by the UKVI and was introduced in April 2012. It allows graduates with genuine and credible business ideas and entrepreneurial skills to stay in the UK to develop their business under the supervision of their academic institution.
- A visa application to the UKVI must be accompanied by an endorsement letter from UEA.
- UEA has 15 visa endorsements for graduates with "genuine and credible" business ideas that will make good use of their skills and add to the economy. We can advise on your eligibility and offer ongoing support in this process.
- For more information regarding the visa please visit - www.gov.uk/tier-1-graduate-entrepreneur-visa
What are the requirements?
- You will need to submit a business plan which will be assessed by UEA Student Enterprise.
- You will need to submit a CV and personal statement for all key personnel involved in the venture.
- You will need to submit proof of identity and current visa.
- As of 1st July 2014, you will need to submit a personal bank statement showing a consecutive 90 day period with at least £945 if applying in the UK, or £1890 if applying from outside the UK.
- You must have been awarded a recognised degree from the University of East Anglia.
- Applicants must not have previously been granted a Tier 1 Post Study Work visa.
- You will need to meet all immigration requirements.
- Successful applicants will be granted a visa initially for one year, with the option to extend an additional year providing all requirements are met and you are making good progress with your business.
- You may be able to convert to a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa at the end of your 2 years as a Graduate Entrepreneur if you meet the visa requirements. As the Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) Visa is not sponsored by UEA, you would need to seek independent legal advice to support you in the process.
- After you have been granted a visa, the Student Enterprise team will maintain contact and assess your progress on a quarterly basis, providing guidance and support.
- The University will inform UKVI if participants are no longer participating in the scheme.
- Although you will be expected to spend most of your time setting up the business, the work conditions of this visa allow you to take employment. The number of hours a week you can work is unrestricted. You are not allowed to work as a doctor or dentist in training or as a professional sports person (including work as a sports coach).
What are the next steps?
- We strongly advise you arrange to meet with us to discuss your idea before you apply, you can book an appointment by visiting EnterpriseCentral or calling 01603 592142.
- Submit your business plan, and other required documents to us by the published deadlines.
- Applicants who pass the review stage will be invited to a panel interview which will include a presentation about your proposed business.
- If you are successful at interview, UEA will provide you with a letter of endorsement as part of your application to the UKVI.
- Apply to the UKVI for the Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa.