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A Student’s Guide to Applying for PR in Singapore

Singapore, renowned for its world-class education system and vibrant multicultural environment, has become a top destination for international students seeking quality education. Many students who come to study in Singapore aspire to make this dynamic city-state their permanent home. In this article, we will explore the avenues available for students to obtain permanent residence (PR) in Singapore and the steps they can take to achieve their dream of building a future in this thriving nation.

Why Choose Singapore?

Singapore offers a plethora of advantages to students, such as high-quality education, a safe environment, excellent healthcare facilities, and numerous job opportunities. The city’s strategic location in Asia also provides students with exposure to diverse cultures and unparalleled networking opportunities, making it an attractive destination for higher education.

Foreign Student Scheme Criteria

Foreign students must have resided in Singapore for at least 2 years

National Examination Requirement: Foreign students are required to have passed a national examination, which could be one of the following:

  • Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE)
  • General Certificate of Education ‘N’ Level (GCE ‘N’ Level)
  • General Certificate of Education ‘O’ Level (GCE ‘O’ Level)
  • General Certificate of Education ‘A’ Level (GCE ‘A’ Level)

Integrated Programme (IP) Students: Students enrolled in the Integrated Programme (IP) are also eligible to apply for PR. The Integrated Programme combines secondary and junior college education, allowing students to skip the ‘O’ Levels and proceed directly to the ‘A’ Levels or an equivalent qualification.

Note: The Foreign Student Scheme is not applicable to international students, and graduates from private institutions are not eligible for this scheme as they have not passed a national examination.

Documents Required for Foreign Student Scheme:

  • Valid travel document with validity of at least 6 months, valid Immigration Pass and passport pages showing personal particulars and official descriptions; 
  • Identity card (if applicable)
  • Birth certificate or official household census list or family register showing both parents’ names; 
  • Deed Poll or change of name certificate (if applicable);
  • Educational certificates (including all tertiary qualifications), transcripts, professional license/membership certificates, vocational trade certificates, and current result slips;
  • Letter of Confirmation from School for Integrated Programme
  • Scholarship Certificate (if applicable);
  • Certificate of Achievement (if applicable);
  • Both Parent’s travel documents with a validity of at least 6 months, valid Immigration Pass, and passport pages showing personal particulars and official descriptions

Option for International and Private Institutions Students

For students who do not meet the specific requirements for Permanent Residency (PR) during their studies in Singapore, pursuing employment after graduation and securing a valid work pass is a viable option. Here are the general steps to consider after graduation:

Step 1: Completion of Education

Complete your studies at a recognised institution in Singapore.

Step 2: Post-Graduation Work Visa

After completing their studies, international students in Singapore are eligible to apply for a one-year Long-Term Visit Pass (LTVP), which allows them to stay in Singapore and seek employment opportunities.

Step 3: Job Search

Look for employment opportunities in Singapore and secure a job offer.

Step 4: Employment Pass (EP) or S Pass

Once you secure a job offer, your prospective employer will apply for an Employment Pass (EP) or S Pass on your behalf. These passes allow you to work in Singapore legally.

Step 5: Meet the PR Eligibility Criteria

Upon securing employment in Singapore, international students can explore the possibility of applying for Permanent Residency (PR) through eligible work passes. It’s important to meet the criteria, such as employment stability, financial stability, social integration and other factors, as outlined by the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority (ICA) of Singapore.

Achieving permanent residency in Singapore stands as a significant milestone for dedicated foreign students who have invested their efforts in both studying and working in the country. Successfully navigating the PR application process involves a deep understanding of eligibility criteria, maintaining a consistent employment record, and ensuring a meticulously prepared application.

By adhering to these steps, foreign students not only secure their place in Singapore but also actively contribute to the nation’s workforce, embracing the cherished values of multiculturalism. In this vibrant environment, they find themselves on a trajectory toward building a permanent and gratifying life. Singapore, a land of limitless opportunities and boundless prospects, welcomes these individuals as they follow the process diligently and make positive contributions to the society and workforce, making their dream of becoming permanent residents in this dynamic and hospitable nation a reality.