The basics

  • This scheme is for international students who wish to be self-employed in the UK after graduating. You are eligible only if you graduated with a degree within the last 12 months (graduate diploma or other lower awards are not eligible). The visa is for 2 years - granted initially for 1 year but can be extended for a further year before the visa expires, providing the Enterprise Team are happy with the progress of the business.
  • If you are interested in applying for this visa we encourage you to seek advice from the Enterprise Team as soon as possible. The earlier you begin to plan and research your business the better!
  • In order to apply for this visa you must first get Sheffield Hallam University's endorsement for your business idea. You can't apply for this visa without our endorsement.
  • To get our endorsement, you must have a credible and genuine business proposal. You must go through a competitive process run by the Enterprise Team. 
  • Interested applicants are required to first submit an application form. Successful candidates will then be invited to submit a Business Plan and then attend an interview.
  • Each year there are 15 places available for endorsement.
  • We encourage you to apply for endorsement at approximately 4 months before you are coming to the end of your studies in the UK, but before your visa expires, so that you have time to apply and be interviewed while you are still in the UK.
  • Remember you cannot be self-employed on a student visa, but you can still discuss your business proposals with the team. If you have any queries regarding your business idea, please contact the Enterprise Team.
  • Once you are successful with obtaining endorsement, you can book an Adviser Appointment with an International Experience Adviser for information on the visa process and application requirements. 
  • You are not eligible to apply for the Start-Up visa if you have previously held a Post Study Work (PSW), IGS or SEGS visa.

If Sheffield Hallam endorses your business idea
  • Advisers in the International Experience Team will be able to guide you where to submit your visa application.
  • You must show £1270 in your bank account every day for 28 days prior to making your application.
  • Each dependant must show £285 (partner) and £315 (per child) in the bank every day for 28 days prior to making the visa applications. 

Full details about the scheme and how to apply can be found at :

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