Addressing policy challenges seminar: Supporting international students

The second seminar in this new series from AGCAS, addressing policy challenges in student and graduate career development. The series is aimed at university leadership, employers, professional bodies and other sector bodies.

The theme of the second seminar is: Supporting international students.

The research
The UK is among the most popular destinations in the world for international students, with more than 458,000 currently studying here, and has a globally recognised reputation for quality and excellence in higher education. But worldwide competition for international students is fierce. The UK’s number of international students has remained flat while competitor countries have experienced double-digit growth. The introduction of the graduate route and likely removal of the £30,000 tier two salary threshold signals the intention to position the UK as welcoming to global talent. This is clearly part of the attempt to meet the International Education Strategy target of 600,000 international students in the UK by 2030.

In direct response to Action 5 of the International Education Strategy, in January 2020, AGCAS launched research in collaboration with UUKi, UKCISA and Coventry University that explores how university careers services currently support international students and identifies best practice across the sector. The research also identifies a series of recommendations for universities, sector bodies and government to improve how we collectively support the employability of our international students, whether they choose to remain in the UK, return home or go elsewhere.

Why should you attend the event?
Employability is a critical consideration for international students choosing a global study destination, but helping international students realise their potential is not the role of careers services alone. Positive outcomes for international students will only be achieved when professionals from international student recruitment, international employer engagement, careers and employability, alumni and international student support teams all work together to understand their international students’ post-graduation aspirations and put strategies in place to help meet them.

This one-day event aims to build on the momentum of UUKi’s International graduate employability: Making good on the promise conference and discussion topics will be framed around recommendations put forth in the Supporting international graduate employability: Making good on the promise report.

The session will start with an opportunity for delegates to contribute to the International Education Strategy. Representatives from the Department for Education and Department for International Trade will ask participants to discuss and give feedback on potential actions related to international student outcomes and employability (including both international students studying in the UK and transnational education students). This is an excellent opportunity for AGCAS members to influence national government policy.

Whilst leading sector experts will join us for keynote presentations, this is not a traditional seminar event. For each discussion topic, experts from across the sector will share their successful initiatives and expertise. Attendees will then be invited to participate in open and collaborative idea generation, to shape how we implement recommendations within institutions and sector bodies. Through this process, AGCAS will produce guidance documents and policy statements to further shape how the UK higher education sector supports international student and graduate employability.

Who should attend?
This conference will be useful for staff who have responsibility for or play a part in the international student experience at their university. This conference is open to all with an interest in this topic, however we expect the following individuals would particularly benefit:
• Pro Vice-Chancellors/Directors with an international or employability remit
• International Strategy/Recruitment Directors and professionals
• Careers and employability professionals
• International marketing, operations, and development professionals
• International alumni professionals
• International student experience professionals
• Employer engagement professionals
• Academics, particularly those involved with course design or embedding employability

View programme

The event is supported by Universities UK International (UUKi), UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) and British Universities' International Liaison Association (BUILA).



T: 0114 251 5752