Student Accommodation in Singapore
Singapore is a haven for international students about to graduate. Source:

Post-graduation prospects for international students in Singapore are looking positive, with unemployment rates remaining low and recent figures from the island state showing 82 percent of those who apply for permanent residency (PR) are successful.

Over the past 10 years, nearly 6,000 international students were granted PR in Singapore after graduation. A further 1,072 students took up citizenship at the end of 2017, The PIE News reports.

Graduates who stay in Singapore beyond university also have good job security as only 2.2 percent of Singapore’s workforce is unemployed, and this is considered high within the country’s economic history according to Trading Economics.

Singapore’s Second Minister of Home Affairs Josephine Teo was unable to identify where the students who received PR were from but believed the statistic reflected Singapore’s Asia driven international student population.

“[I]n assessing whether an applicant should be granted ‘PR’ or Singapore Citizenship, an important consideration is the applicant’s ability to integrate with the local population as well as his potential to contribute to our society. These considerations apply to all applicants, including the foreign students,” Teo said, according to The Pie News.

Singapore, food court

For PR or citizenship in Singapore, an important consideration is whether the applicant can integrate with the local population, according to Teo. Source: Shutterstock

Although international students have bright graduate prospects in Singapore, the 2011 cap on international students has led to a fall in overseas students in the country. In the past five years, the number of international students enrolled at the National University of Singapore fell from 5,923 to 4,637.

This is having a broader negative impact on Singapore’s culture and economy, reported Today Online.

Welcoming overseas students and allowing them to stay in Singapore after graduation puts the country on the map as an international education hotspot, and will benefit the economy with diversified skill sets and perspectives.

As birth rates fall, primary and high schools are seeing a rise in empty seats. Singapore needs to recruit more international students over the coming years to protect its universities from the same fate.

Efforts to grant international students will help ensure that educated minds continue contributing to the economy after graduation, and the country can make sure is making the most of the overseas student market by welcoming more students into its institutions.

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