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‘Why come to a country that treats you like an outsider?’

By River Reporter Dec 10, 2013

The Home Office will introduce a new bill for international students REX FEATURES

It was love at first sight the moment I set foot in London. I fell in love with the colourful, multi-cultural atmosphere of the city, the friendly people and how well-organused my life seemed to be. 

The UK had so much to offer me, and I felt that by developing my profesional skills, I could offer it something in return. 

I, like many other foreign students coming from less developed countries, instantly appreciated the high quality of education and health care in Britain as well as the countless job opportunities.

Feeling welcome in a foreign country is a crucial factor that influences students when they choose their university.

However, the new immigration bill that is a part of the Government's legislative agenda for the coming year will surely make students' life a lot tougher. 

It includes a £200 fee to join the NHS, and gives landlords the right to run background checks on students' immigration status, which could result in it being much harder for them to find a house.

The grass isn't greener on the other side

All the changes and the numerous debates on the topic will make a lot of young people think twice before entering the UK, and will drive them towards more welcoming countries such as Germany, Holland or the United States where the living costs are also lower.

Why come to a country that treats you like an outsider and makes your life more complicated? Is it all going to be worth the money and effort in the end?

Being in Kingston has been an amazing opportunity for me and I love my course, but I doubt that I would have chosen the same path for myself had I chosen to apply for my undergraduate degree this year – and I'm sure many international students feel the same way. 

As a recent report by the Institute for Public Policy Research stated, Britain is the second most popular destination for international students looking for a degree.

Hundreds of thousands of young people from all over the world migrate to this country every year and leave their homes and families in exchange for a prospective future and a better life. 

They also contribute to the British economy with an estimate of 13 billon per year and generate around 70,000 jobs.


It was not long ago when Business Secretary Vince Cable said that international students do not feel welcome any more, and warned that Britain might lose its status as a leading destination for students.

Needless to say, the latest figures show that his suggestion was right.

If the new bill is passed, it will make the cost of living for students even more expensive and put off a lot of those who want to come and study in Britain.

But even if you can cope with the living and studying expenses, is it worth it coming to a country where you do not feel welcome?

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