International students in Canada are now allowed to work full-time during studies. From November 15, 2022 until December 31, 2023, international students who are in Canada and have off-campus work authorization on their study permit will be allowed to work over 20 hours per week off-campus while class is in session. Foreign nationals who have already submitted a study permit application, as of October 7, 2022, will also be able to benefit from this temporary change, provided their application is approved.
This measure will provide many international students with a greater opportunity to gain valuable work experience in Canada, and will increase the availability of workers to sustain Canada’s post-pandemic growth. With more than 500,000 international students already in Canada available to potentially work additional hours, this temporary change reflects the important role international students can play in addressing labour shortage, while continuing to pursue their studies. Study permit holders are still expected to balance their study and work commitments, as those who stop studying or reduce course loads to only study part-time are not eligible to work off-campus.
This month, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is also launching a pilot project to automate the processing of study permit extensions. The types of applications being included in this pilot have a consistently high approval rate, as all applicants have previously been approved to study in Canada. The pilot will involve a small group of applicants who could see their extended study permit processed much faster, with the goal of improving client service. Should the pilot be successful, it will be expanded in order to help reduce processing times and allow officers to focus on more complex applications.
Other measures recently launched to benefit international students and recent graduates include:
- a transition period for those studying online from abroad
- an opportunity for those with expired or expiring post-graduation work permits to get an additional 18-month open work permit.
With unprecedented interest in Canada from applicants around the world, IRCC continues to set the bar higher for immigration processing. Ongoing efforts and client service improvements by the department aim to strengthen Canada’s immigration system, shorten wait times, and reduce application backlogs.
- Most post-secondary international students are allowed to work on and/or off campus, with their authorization to work printed directly on their study permit. In the past, nearly half of the post-secondary international students in Canada reported earning income during their studies.
- Prior to today’s announcement, any student with the authorization to work off-campus was permitted to work a maximum of 20 hours per week while class is in session, as well as full-time during scheduled breaks. Students eligible to work on campus are not subject to a cap on hours for on-campus work.
- Work off campus as an international student
- Your conditions as a study permit holder in Canada
- Temporary policy changes to the Post-Graduation Work Permit Program