5 reasons why graduate jobs in Scotland make it perfect for international students 

What comes to mind when you think of Scotland? Tartan? Bagpipes? Kilts? Let’s rewrite those old-fashioned stereotypes.  

Scotland has a strong economy. Scotland offers great job security. Scotland is a leading location to launch your graduate career

study abroad scotland stiriling

And the best part? International students who study in Scotland or elsewhere in the UK can stay to accelerate their career for up to two years after graduation. 

So, whether you’re already sold or need a little more convincing, here are five reasons why graduate jobs in Scotland make it the perfect study destination for international students: 

  1. Two of the UK’s top five technology hubs are in Scotland 
  1. Scotland is the most attractive UK region for business outside of London 
  1. Scotland’s engineering sector has had the highest growth in three decades 
  1. There’s record economic growth and employment in Scotland 
  1. Scotland’s cost of living is lower than much of the UK 

1. Two of the UK’s top five technology hubs are in Scotland

In recent years, Scotland’s tech industry has boomed. The digital technology sector is expected to be the country’s biggest industry by 2024, growing 1.5 times faster than the rest of the economy. 

Scotland’s vibrant cities of Glasgow and Edinburgh have quickly become two of the UK’s most attractive destinations for tech companies and investment, named among the UK’s top five technology hubs outside of London (CBRE UK Tech Cities Report 2022). 

Demand for technology professionals is at an all-time high. In 2021 alone, digital job vacancies increased by 25% (Tech Nation Jobs and Skills Report 2021), with rapid growth areas including: 

  • financial technology (FinTech)
  • cyber security 
  • health technology 
  • big data 
  • computer games 
  • robotics. 

Identified as the most critical growth area, financial technology is expected to create 20,000 new jobs by 2031 (Scottish Development International 2022). So, if you’re a tech-minded student looking to live, study and work in the UK, Scotland is the ideal country to accelerate your graduate career.

2. Scotland is the most attractive UK region for business outside of London  

More businesses chose Scotland than any other non-London UK location in 2020. That’s because Scotland’s economy is thriving

Firmly established as the most attractive region for business outside of the UK’s capital (EY Scotland Attractiveness Survey 2022), Scotland has seen continuous growth in the face of adversity. In fact, a quarter of the UK’s top 20 cities for foreign direct investment outside of London are in Scotland.  

Many large multinational companies have set up bases around the country – particularly throughout its big hitters, Glasgow and Edinburgh – including: 

  • Accenture 
  • Amazon 
  • Apple 
  • Deloitte 
  • EY 
  • IBM 
  • J.P. Morgan 
  • KPMG 
  • Microsoft 
  • PwC 

With a steady demand for business professionals, starting your business career in Scotland is a smart choice for international students. 

3. Scotland’s engineering sector has had the highest growth in three decades

The last couple of years have seen significant growth in Scotland’s engineering sector, according to Scottish Engineering 2022 figures. To the extent that skills shortages now threaten further growth.  

This makes engineering a strong career choice for job security in Scotland. So, if you’d like to build a future in engineering here, areas of specialism include: 

  • Aerospace engineering: Scotland’s space sector is rising the fastest in the UK. Projected to grow in value to £4bn by 2030. 
  • Subsea engineering: Scotland is the world’s largest subsea engineering hub. There are currently 700 companies generating £7.5bn in revenue.
  • Renewable energy engineering: a sector employing 46,000+ people. 50% of Scotland’s energy will be powered by renewables by 2030. 
  • Chemical engineering: Scotland aims to reach net zero emissions by 2045. One way is by harnessing hydrogen – 20 pioneering projects in this area are underway! 

 4. There’s record economic growth and employment in Scotland

Scotland is experiencing its lowest unemployment rate since records began (Office for National Statistics 2022). Its high-performing flagship cities include: 

  • Glasgow: home to around a third of jobs in Scotland, bases for businesses in Scotland and gross value added (GVA) in Scotland (Invest Glasgow 2022). 
  • Edinburgh: the UK city least affected economically by the global pandemic (Demos-PwC Good Growth for Cities Index 2020). 
  • Aberdeen: predicted to have the country’s fastest-growing economy by the end of 2022 (IM UK Powerhouse Report Autumn/Winter 2021).  

5. Scotland’s cost of living is lower than much of the UK

Scotland is not only economically sound, but also affordable to live in. The cost of living is lower than much of the UK – particularly London. So, you’ll get more for your money here. 

  • Stirling: up to 77% lower cost of living than London*. 
  • Aberdeen: up to 71% lower cost of living than London*. 
  • Dundee: up to 67% lower cost of living than London*. 
  • Edinburgh: up to 60% lower cost of living than London*. 
  • Glasgow: up to 59% lower cost of living than London*. 

*Numbeo.com, November 2022 

Want to secure your graduate jobs in Scotland?

If you have your heart set on a graduate career in Scotland, you’ll need to complete an undergraduate degree first. And there is a wealth of world-class Scottish universities to choose from. 

But, how do you know which Scottish university is the right fit for you? Fortunately, international students have an advantage: INTO Stirling: Scotland Education Centre.  

With progression options to 11 Scottish universities, INTO Stirling is ideal for students who need time to decide. Here, you can adjust to the Scottish education system before you start your university studies. You can experience different Scottish cities before you commit to a four-year degree in one of them. 

This is what the first year of your Scottish study journey could look like: 

  1. Study an International Foundation at INTO Stirling
  1. Explore Scotland’s cities and visit its universities. 
  1. Receive personalized placement support. 
  1. Make an informed choice about your degree. 
  1. Confidently progress to a Scottish university

Feel safe in the knowledge that you’ll receive guaranteed conditional offers from the University of Stirling and the University of Strathclyde when you study an International Foundation here. 

Choose INTO Stirling to safeguard your studies – and future career – in Scotland. 

Find out more about studying at INTO Stirling: Scotland Education Centre. 

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