International students in Canada are in an excellent position to develop their career in Canada and stay permanently. The decision you have already made to study in Canada places you in a unique position.
Work while studying
Your Canadian study permit doesn’t just grant you the right to attend university or college, it also grants you the right to work off-campus for up to 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions, and full-time during scheduled academic breaks.
This opportunity is generally not offered to your peers who decided to study in other countries, such as the United States. It allows you to make some money to fund your ongoing studies and living costs, all the while giving you connections in the local labour market. These professional networks could lead into landing a great job upon graduation.
Bring family members to join you in Canada
The government of Canada, not to mention the university or college you are attending, want you to be happy while you are studying in Canada. Consequently, you are able to have your spouse/common-law partner join you in Canada, as well as any dependent children. Your spouse/partner can apply for an open work permit , allowing him or her to come to Canada and work for any employer, while your children may also join you.
In addition, you can also look into having other family members, such parents and siblings, visit you in Canada. To find out more, use our exclusive Visiting Canada Tool.
Obtain a Post-Graduation Work Permit upon graduation
Under the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program, you can obtain a work permit valid for up to three years, depending on the duration of your study program.
- No job offer required.
- Work with any employer across Canada and change job when you want to.
- Get that all-important Canadian work experience as you work towards obtaining permanent residence.
Many international graduates use the PGWP as a stepping stone into a successful career in Canada, and towards Canadian permanent residence.
Discover your pathway to permanent residence
There are probably more pathways to Canadian permanent residence than you think. Did you know that some provinces allow certain graduates from institutions in other provinces to apply to their particular Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)? It’s true.
And did you know that the federal government also provides multiple pathways to permanent residence? That’s true too.
Make sure you have a plan in place for making this important transition, and get assistance if you’re unsure of all your potential options.
Secure permanent resident status, and ultimately Canadian citizenship
This is the ultimate goal of many, if not most, international students and graduates in Canada. Permanent resident status grants a number of rights, including the right to live and work anywhere in Canada without the need to first secure a work permit. It is also a step along the way to Canadian citizenship.
Canada is looking to its cohort of international students and graduates to become its leading newcomers. You have learned the language(s), got the experience and the education, and proven that you are worthy of joining the Canadian family. So, why not aim for the top and have permanent residence and citizenship as your ultimate goal?
Gain valuable Canadian work experience
Many Canadian economic immigration programs place a large emphasis on applicants’ work experience in Canada. As a graduate who has already entered the Canadian labour market, you have proven that you are an asset to the country. You can be trusted, you are intelligent, you are educated, and you get along with colleagues — so of course Canada wants you to stay around longer than just a few years.
While working in Canada, you can build connections that will help you throughout your career. Overall, your Canadian work experience is likely to prove invaluable.