Canadian Off-campus Work Permit
Effective immediately, international students studying at eligible private post-secondary institutions in Canada can now apply for off-campus work permits. Previously, only international students at public universities and colleges in the province were able to apply.
"The Government of Canada is committed to attracting newcomers to Canada, and helping them succeed once they arrive," said Minister Finley. "This pilot will provide more international students with opportunities to work off-campus and to gain Canadian work experience. It complements our recent improvements to the post-graduate work program and our efforts to make Canada a more attractive choice for international students."
On April 21, the Government of Canada announced that under the Post-Graduate Work Permit program international students will be able to obtain, for the first time, an open three-year work permit with no restrictions on the type of employment and no requirement for a job offer. Students in the OCWP Program can ease into the post-graduate program as the Off-Campus Work Permit is valid for up to 90 days after graduation, thus allowing them to search for post-graduation jobs.
Giving students access to off-campus work permits also gives Canadian institutions a competitive advantage for attracting the best and brightest international students.
Foreign students contribute approximately $4 billion a year to Canada's economy. There are about 100,000 foreign students in Canada who could be eligible for work permits under the Off-Campus Work Permit Program. The program is not intended to take jobs away from Canadian students. Each applicant will be required to compete for employment on an equal basis with Canadians.
Citizenship and Immigration Canada has signed agreements with most provinces to implement the program, and agreements with New Brunswick and the Yukon are currently being finalized. The agreements allow eligible foreign students at public post-secondary institutions to work off-campus for up to 20 hours a week during the school year and full-time during study breaks.
Eligible foreign students can apply for an Off-Campus Work Permit immediately, and may be able to work off-campus as early as this summer. The work permit is valid for the duration of their study permit.
"CIC is working in cooperation with the provinces and territories to make Canada a destination of choice by making it easier for foreign students to work in Canada during and after their studies," said Minister Solberg. "Off-campus work agreements will make it easier for students to gain work experience in the Canadian labour market and earn extra income while studying," he said.