My name is Tsin Hong Choo and I am from Malaysia. I came to the UK to do a Civil Engineering degree at Imperial and will graduate in October 2019. I chose to study in the UK over competitor countries like the US and Australia because of its prestigious universities, multiculturalism and its existing cultural ties with Malaysia.

I will start a career as a graduate structural engineer at Atkins, a global design, engineering and project management consultancy. I had considered to move to other countries after my graduation, but the fact that I already knew the UK well from my time studying here at Imperial was a decisive factor in my wish to stay here. I am in the process of transferring from a Tier 4 student visa to a Tier 2 skilled workers one with the support from Imperial and Atkins – but I still have to pay myself as well.

It would have made my decision to stay even easier if there would have been an automatic two-year post-study work visa and it would make the UK more attractive and valuable to STEM graduate talent.

International students, like Tsin Hong Choo, who stay on after their graduation contribute to the UK economy and help fill the UK STEM shortage which is estimated to cost £1.5 billion a year.

Tsin Hoong Choo, MEng Civil Engineering, Imperial College London