“The visa application process has taught me to believe in myself”

Yongjie Chen, October 2, 2019 2 min read

Yongjie Chen is a UX Designer from China who specialises in research and analysis, conceptual design, prototype and design evaluation, and development and QA testing. She came to the UK in 2011 to study, and received the Tier 1 Visa for Exceptional Talent in 2018. Today, she runs her own design company which works with a broad selection of UK clients.

I’ve been living and working in the UK for 8 years. What I like most about it is its great sense of public service, cultural diversity and the unique British humour. People here are very friendly and open-minded to different cultures.

Before I received the Tech Nation endorsement, I was on a Tier 2 visa. Being recognised by Tech Nation and receiving the visa for Exceptional Tech Talent has opened the door for me to wider tech opportunities in the UK. I’ve been able to explore different industries, companies and find projects that I’m passionate about. Even more than this, the visa application process has taught me to believe in myself. I feel I have become better.

The tech scene and atmosphere in the UK is very diverse, open and friendly. It allows me to meet people from all over the world and learn from them. I’ve met many women at tech events, and seen lots of opportunities for women in tech across the UK.

My application journey started out with hesitation. When I heard about this visa programme, I thought I wouldn’t qualify for it. Luckily, I met an Exceptional Talent Visa alumnus at a tech event, who I shared my hesitation with. He shared his experience and encouraged me to believe in myself and go ahead to apply for it. Eventually I did, and my application was successful.

Once you have received the visa, you will be able to join the Visa Alumni slack group. We have monthly social events and occasional hiking trips and hackathon events. In addition to the alumni network, it’s also a good idea to attend meetups, conferences and talks. Platforms like Meetup and Eventbrite are great places to find interesting events and local communities near you.

My advice to future Tech Nation Visa applicants would be to believe in yourself and don’t be afraid of failure. You own your life. Have faith in yourself and do your best to achieve what you want. Start with the first step towards your goal. Sometimes you may fail, but do not fear it. Just do it.

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