Twitter Facebook Vimeo

The Third Level Graduate Scheme for students from outside the EEA

Can I stay and work in Ireland after I graduate?

Students graduating in Ireland with an Irish accredited degree (primary, masters or doctorate) may apply to stay on after their studies for the purpose of seeking employment and applying for a green card or work permit. To qualify for the Third Level Graduate Scheme, the student's award must be granted by a recognised awarding body based in the Republic of Ireland (such as QQI or a university). Overseas accreditation - for example an award studied in Ireland but accredited by UK university - will not qualify for the scheme.

A person who qualifies will be granted one non-renewable extension to their current student permission (Stamp 1G from 1st February 2016) for a maximum twelve month period starting on the day upon which they received their exam results. For students whose degree is at a minimum of level 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications the period for the Graduate Employment Scheme is 12 months. Students on level 7 of the NFQ will be offered the 6 month scheme.


What are my entitlements under the scheme?

Holders of a Stamp 1G can work for up to 40 hours a week and/or to seek employment and apply for further permission to remain in the state under green card or work permit arrangements.

Graduates who receive the Stamp 1G are also entitled to return to education after availing of the scheme if they re-enter at a higher level and can finish the new course within the overall 7 year limit on studies for non-EEA students.


How do I apply?

To apply graduates should present at the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB), 13/14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2, or their local Garda Siochána registration office, with documentary evidence of their exam results in addition to the usual requirements for renewal of a GNIB card.


When can I apply?

You can apply as soon as you receive confirmation of your degree result.

Note: Graduating non-EEA students can engage in full-time work (up to 40 hours per week) between 1st June and 30th September provided this period is covered by an existing Stamp 2 student permission.


Where can I find out more?

For more information of the conditions and requirements of this scheme please visit the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) website.


Last reviewed/updated: August 2016