International students could get fast tracked visas to work in Canada


Date: 08 July 2016

International students studying in Canada could find themselves fast tracked to residency if they want to work in the country after graduations.

Immigration minister John McCallum confirmed that the government is looking at a number of options, including giving more points to students under the express entry programme which currently prioritises skilled workers.

“I think the best source of immigrants for Canada is international students because they know French and English, because they know Canada, because they’re educated, because they’re young. We should court them. We should encourage them to come here,” he said.

He explained that there will be changes to the way international students are assessed under the express entry programme and an announcement on what they are can be expected soon.

“Stage one, which I hope would be soon, would be to give more points to the students, and stage two, further down the road after more study, would be to do other things to improve express entry,” he added.

Meanwhile, international students planning to study in Canada this year are being reminded that they will be required to have an Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA) to fly into the country.

Study permit holders from visa-exempt countries who received their permit on or before July 2015 have been required to have the document since March although they will be able to board a flight until the end of September during a leniency period.

Applicants who were issued with an initial study or work permit on or after August 2015 should have been issued automatically with an eTA along with their permit.

However, a spokesman for Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), pointed out that an eTA will not be automatically renewed for study permit renewal applications, so people who wish to exit and re-enter Canada by air will need to ensure that their eTA is still valid.

“If your eTA has expired, you will need to apply for a new one as soon as you can and before the eTA leniency period ends on 29 September 201,” the spokesman said.

Potential students are also being reminded that there are now new rules to reduce the potential for fraud or misuse of the student study programme aimed at protecting Canada’s international reputation for high quality education and improve the services available to genuine students.

This means that they must be studying at a designated learning institution (DLI), including institutions that are designated by provinces and territories on the basis of meeting minimum standards.

Students must be actively pursuing their studies while in Canada but full time international students enrolled at designated institutions in certain programmes can work part time off campus and full time during scheduled school breaks without a work permit.