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Why Studying in the UK... is the passport to success

A UK education is second to none. We lead the world in cutting-edge research opportunities, internationally recognised degrees and relevant, high-quality, high-standard training. I am delighted that over 800,000 international students are finding this out for themselves.

But we want even more people to be aware of these opportunities. In June 1999, we announced the start of a worldwide campaign to increase the number of international students in the UK. We set a new target of attracting 75,000 extra students to the UK by 2005. To make this possible, we have made studying in this country more affordable and more welcoming.

International students no longer need to obtain permission to work, so they can earn extra money while studying in the UK. A student can work part-time for up to 20 hours a week during term time and full-time during vacations. And if the course runs for a year or more, the student’s dependants can now work in the UK, even if they here for less than a year.

We have also introduced simplified entry procedures for UK visa holders and are making the visa service more user-friendly for students. International students can now expect to have straightforward visa applications dealt with within 24 hours, and non-straightforward applications within 10 days.

Studying in the UK will not only give students a thorough understanding of the subject but also analytical abilities and problem solving skills that are much prized by employers.

The chance to improve their language skills is bringing many students to this country. English is the language of commerce, of the Internet, of global communication and of medicine. We are proud that 750 million people world-wide have now learnt our language. That English is becoming a lingua franca means that students who have studied here are in demand all over the world.

As part of our plans, the flagship Chevening Scholarship Scheme now offers up to 1,000 scholarships each year for overseas students to undertake postgraduate study or research in the UK.

Most Chevening scholarships are for one-year Masters courses, but some are for shorter specialised courses lasting up to six months. Courses include law, business administration and international relations. They allow talented graduates and young professionals to become familiar with the UK and to gain skills that will benefit their countries. British Embassies and High Commissions select candidates for the scholarships, which are offered in more than 150 countries including India, China and Brazil.

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