Canada’s foreign enrolment has been growing since 2014. It has grown by 73% between 2014 and 2018 alone making Canada the fastest growing destination in the world with nearly 6,00,000 visiting students.

The Canadian government has increased the window during which international students may apply for a post-study work permit

Students may also apply from outside of Canada, and no longer require a valid study permit during the entire application period

International students who want to work in Canada following their studies at a Canadian institution will have more time to apply for their Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). The PGWP allows international students who have completed a programme of at least eight months’ duration to stay on to work in Canada for up to three years. This experience can count towards their future application for Permanent residency.

Earlier students used to have only 90 days to apply for a PGWP following the completion of their programme, they now have twice that amount of time – six months (180 days) – to apply. The 180-day period begins when students’ final marks have been issued or when they receive a formal written notification of their programme completion.

In addition, the application rules regarding PGWP have also been relaxed to the effect that:

  • Students will no longer need to possess a valid study permit to apply – the study permit only needs to have been valid at some point during the 180-day period;
  • Students may apply for a PGWP from their home country, meaning that they may return home for up to six months after finishing their programme without jeopardising their chances of obtaining a work permit for employment in Canada.

This is a unique opportunity for international students who want to get Canadian work experience and apply for permanent residency in the near future.

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