International (or Nigerian) students studying in Canada, are able to work both during and after their studies. Also, students may be eligible to stay and remain permanently in Canada after their studies.
WORK IN CANADA DURING YOUR STUDIES
As an international or Nigerian student studying at a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Canada, you are able to work part-time (up to 20 hours per week) during regular school sessions, and full-time (40 hours a week) during scheduled school breaks/holidays (e.g. winter and summer holidays or spring break).
International students studying in Canada are eligible for a variety of employment/work options, such as:
Work On-Campus: As an international student studying in Canada, you may work on campus at the educational institution where you are studying without a work permit, if you: are a full-time student and you have a valid study permit.
* Note: You must stop working on-campus on the day you no longer meet the eligibility requirements (e.g., if you are no longer a full-time student.)
Work Off-Campus: As of June 1, 2014, you may qualify to work off campus without a work permit, if you: have a valid study permit, you are a full-time student, you are enrolled at a designated learning institution (DLI), and you are studying in a program that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate that is a minimum of six (6) months in duration.
* Note: You must stop working on the day you no longer meet the above eligibility requirements (e.g., if you transfer to an educational institution that is not a DLI.)
On average, a student working part-time would earn between $800 to $1,500 CAD per month, while a student working full-time will earn between $1,600 to $3,000 CAD per month. Furthermore, even if you do not need the extra income, it is recommended that you work during your studies, because you will gain valuable work experience that will be to your benefit when/if you decide to work in Canada after your studies.
Work as a Co-op Student or Intern: For some academic programs, work experience is part of the curriculum. International students who wish to partake in a co-op or internship program, must apply for a co-op/internship work permit at the time of applying for their study permit.
To be eligible for a co-op or internship work permit, you must: have a valid study permit, your intended employment must be an essential part of your program of study in Canada, your employment must be part of your program offered by a designated learning institution (DLI) and backed by a certified letter from a responsible academic official of the educational institution, and your co-op or internship employment cannot form more than fifty percent (50%) of the total program of study.
OPPORTUNITIES FOR SPOUSES OF INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS TO WORK IN CANADA
There are opportunities for the spouses (husband/wife) of international students to work in Canada, if desired. If your spouse wants to work in Canada, he/she must apply for his/her own work permit.
Your spouse (or common-law partner) may apply for a work permit if: you are a full-time student at a DLI and you have a valid study permit. Work permits for your spouse (or common-law partner) will be valid for the same period of time as your study permit.
Accompanying spouses (or common-law partners) of international students are eligible for an open work permit (allowing him/her to accept any job with any employer), which means they do not need a job offer or a labour market opinion from Service Canada in order to apply for a work permit.
WORK IN CANADA AFTER YOUR STUDIES
International students who have graduated from a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Canada, are given the opportunity to gain valuable Canadian work experience through the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP). So, you must apply for a work permit under the PGWPP, in order to be able to work in Canada after you graduate.
To be eligible for the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), your study program must be a minimum of eight (8) months duration. The length of your PGWP will depend on the length of your study, up to a maximum of three (3) years. Keep in mind that a PGWP cannot be valid for longer than the student’s study program. For instance, if you graduate from a four-year degree program, you could be eligible for a three-year work permit if you meet the criteria. Likewise, if you graduate from an eight-month certificate program, you would be eligible for a work permit that is valid for no more than eight months.
It should be noted that based on our extensive years of experience, we have discovered that students who graduate from a program with a duration of 16 months and above, do receive a 3-year PGWP. So, if you want to increase the likelihood of receiving a 3-year post-graduation work permit, then you should considering enrolling in a program that is 16 months or longer.
You are entitled to a Canadian Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) only once in your life-time, so ensure that before you apply for your Canadian PGWP, you are making a decision that is in your best interest. It should be noted that even if you decide to pursue another program of study in Canada after your initial PGWP expires, you will NOT be issued another PGWP afterwards, so act wisely!
* If you are contemplating applying for a PGWP and you are not sure whether you are about to make the right decision, you should contact us for a review of your circumstances.
REMAIN IN CANADA AFTER YOUR STUDIES
International students who recently graduated from a Canadian educational institution, may be eligible to apply to immigrate to Canada (i.e. stay in Canada permanently) under one of the various immigration programs, managed through the Express Entry system. Keep in mind that each program has its own requirements.
Skilled Canadian work experience gained through the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) helps graduates qualify for permanent residence (PR) in Canada through the Canadian Experience Class (CEC). CEC is a permanent resident category for individuals with Canadian skilled work experience. It was developed for foreign/international graduates and temporary foreign workers with qualifying Canadian work experience.
International students are deemed to have the potential to make a successful transition from temporary to permanent residence, they are conversant with the Canadian society and can contribute to the Canadian economy. Thus, under the Express Entry system, foreign students receive extra credit for study in Canada, which makes it easier for them to receive an invitation to apply (ITA) for PR.
To be eligible to apply under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), the candidate must: Have a qualifying work experience and have knowledge of English or French, which are the two Canadian official languages.
Do you want to explore your options of remaining in Canada? Contact Us!
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