Canada announces major Study & work visa changes for international students

In order to help oversees studentsto pursuetheir Canadian education this fall, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced major study & work visa reforms on May 14, 2020.

According to the announcement:

  • International students will be able to enrol in online courses at a Canadian designated learning institution (DLI) and complete up to 50 per cent of the program while abroad.
  • IRCC is not only allowing international students to study online while abroad but they will also still be eligible for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) after moving to Canada.
  • Usually Canada immigration does not count online courses toward the study requirement for a PGWP application. However, due to Canada’s coronavirus travel restrictions, IRCC reformed this rule & announced that International students will not have time deducted from the length of their PGWP for the period they spent outside of Canada, up to December 31, 2020.

The Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) is very popular among Canada’s international students as it enables them to work in Canada for up to 3 years after completing their graduation.

Such work experience proves very beneficial for them when submitting their federal and/or provincial immigration application to get Canadian permanent residence.

This newly-announced reform will definitely encourage more international students to pursue their studies in Canada this fall as they can complete a portion of their studies in their home country, while still being able to access the same benefits of Canadian education.

Another big advantage for them is the low cost of study since they will not have to bear the additional living expenses in Canada.

Canada is one of the world’s most attractive destinations for international students. Prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, over 640,000 international students were studying in Canada.

Although overseas students who received their study visa after March 18, 2020 are still not able to come to Canada, IRCC is still processing new study permits for international students. IRCC will notify new students as to when they are able to travel to Canada again.

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