Education in Canada is one of the best in the world according to global rankings. The serene learning environment and research-based education is a lure for thousands of international students yearly. Studying in Canada is expensive with tuition fees of over $20,000 annually it seems arduous for an average international student to survive without recourse to part-time jobs to bring some extra cash.
One of the main advantages of studying in Canada is the authorization by the govt to work while studying, but there are certain things you should be aware of.
How many hours are you permitted to work, are you allowed to work and what type of type, will be discussed in this guide.
International students with a valid study permit and social insurance number, who are studying full time in Canada can work without work permit unrestricted on-campus provided the international student is studying in any of the following
- A post-secondary school, such as a college or university, or CEGEP (publicly funded pre‑university college) in Quebec,
- A private college-level school in Quebec that operates under the same rules as public schools, and is at least 50 per cent funded by government grants
- Or, a Canadian private school that can legally award degrees under provincial law
International students studying in Canada with a valid study permit can work 20 hours per week without a work permit. To be able to work off-campus, the international student must satisfy the following criteria.
- Have a valid study permit
- Are a full-time student at a designated learning institution (DLI)
- Have started studying
- Are in a program that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate and is at least six months long
- And, have a Social Insurance Number (SIN)
Note: If you are a final semester student and you do not need full full-tuition to finish your study, you still qualify to work off-campus.
Work As A Co-Op Student or Intern
Co-op students are mandated to acquire valuable work experience as part of their course. You can work as an intern if you meet the following criteria
- You have a valid study permit
- Working is a crucial part of your study program in Canada
- You have a letter from your school that confirms all students on your course need to complete work placements as part of their degree
- And, your co-op or internship is 50 percent or less of the total program of study.
Life After School In Canada
Canadian employers have a preference for degrees obtained within Canada, as such the rate of graduate employability is very high. International students upon graduation can stay and work in Canada either as a temporary worker or could become a permanent resident through many of the PR immigration streams.
You can apply for a post-graduate work visa if you
- are 18-years-old or older
- have continuously studied full-time in Canada
- have a document from your school (transcript, official letter, certificate, etc.) that confirms you completed and passed all your program requirements
- apply for a work permit within 90 days of when it was confirmed that you completed your program and
- have a valid study permit when you apply for the work permit.
If you don’t qualify for the above criteria, it’s worth looking if you are eligible for another type of work visa.