So you’ve completed your studies at an Irish university and you want to remain in the country to work after your graduation; what are your options as far as your immigration status is concerned?

This will depend on whether you are an EEA, EU or Swiss student or not. Find out if you are an EEA or EU student.

  1. If you are an EU/EEA/Swiss student, you do not have to apply for anything further in order to remain in the country. After 3 months in Ireland, there are a few simple terms or rules which you must satisfy though, namely you must be actively seeking employment and generally not become a burden to the state i.e. apply to receive financial benefits. Plus your family have the right to join you and live in the country too.
  2. If you come from a country that is outside of the EU/EEA or Switzerland you a few options, the most significant being the Third Level Graduate Scheme.

Third Level Graduate Scheme

EEA graduates who are legal residents in Ireland and who’ve graduated from a third-level institution have been allowed to remain in the country to seek employment or apply for a green card or permit. They must have graduated with a primary, master’s or doctorate degree.

Terms of the Scheme

Those who apply successfully can remain in Ireland for 6 months from the day they received their exam results to find employment. During these 6 months, they must meet the terms of their student permission to live in the country, namely they can only work for up to 40 hours per week without a work permit.

How long can I stay?

Those whose degree is level 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications can remain in Ireland under the scheme for 12 months. Those only at level 7 can remain in the country for just 6 months.

What documents do I need?

An original letter signed by your university’s College Registrar to confirm that you’ve completed the course of study to a satisfactory standard and to confirm the qualification you’ve obtained

  • Current passport
  • Current Certificate of Registration issued by the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB card)
  • After the scheme duration has expired

Once the 12 or 6 months (depending on the level of your degree) have passed, you must have one of the following in order to remain in Ireland:

  • A Green Card or Work Permit
  • Permission to remain by pursuing further study
  • Permission through another scheme

Other options

There are also options like the Green Card Scheme and the Work Permit Scheme where there are labour shortages. Both allow the individual to remain in the country for up to 2 years. There are also terms relating to the annual salary required for these schemes.

Now that you know about the options available to you to remain in Ireland after your studies, start searching for a course abroad in Ireland with SBE.