International students hoping to remain in Canada on a Post-Graduation Work Permit now have 180 days (six months) to apply once they obtain their final marks and notice of graduation and are no longer required to have a valid study permit.
The changes were announced by the Government of Canada on Thursday, February 14 along with other modifications to Canada’s popular Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) program.
The extension doubles the amount of time, from 90 days to 180 days, recent graduates have to apply for a PGWP once their schools issue their notice of graduation.
Another corresponding change was the removal of the requirement that international graduates have a valid study permit when applying for a PGWP.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) now indicates a study permit must only have been valid “at some point” during the 180 days that graduates now have to submit their PGWP application.
Study permits are generally issued for the duration of the student’s academic program. By effectively removing the valid study permit requirement, students will now have to adequate time to obtain the documents they need to apply without adding the stress of an expired study permit.
A Post-Graduation Work Permit is an open work permit that allows international graduates of eligible Canadian designated learning institutions to stay and work in Canada for a period of up to three years after their studies are completed. It is a great program for those international students who would like to acquire valuable Canadian work experience after graduation. Also, this program is one of the bridging mechanisms for foreign students to transition from temporary resident status to permanent residency.
In order to be eligible, the candidate's study program must be at least eight (8) months long and meet other specified criteria.
New amendments in February 2019 made a positive change to immigration law authorizing international graduates to apply for a PGWP without worrying about holding a valid study permit and the deadline to apply has been extended from 90 days to 180 days (6 months). The international students are advised to apply within 180 days of program completion in order to take advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity.
Skilled Canadian work experience obtained with a PGWP can help international graduates qualify for permanent residence in Canada through the Canadian Experience Class, which is one of the three Federal High Skilled programs managed by Canada’s Express Entry system.
It's a great time to consider studying in Canada and making steps towards your great future.
Check out our Study in Canada Workshop to learn how to get admitted to Canadian universities or colleges with scholarship and Study Permit Application Workshop to learn how to get a visa to study in Canada from experienced Canadian immigration specialists.