In our last article, we looked at how to come to Canada with your family to study and how to move to Canada as a self-employed person.
Today, we will discuss What You Should Know When Coming to Canada to Study.
If you intend to study as an international student in Canada, you must be aware of the following seven key pieces of information in order to prevent having your status placed at risk.
1. Attend a school (designated learning institution) and complete a programme that qualifies for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP).
Many people continue to fall victim to agents who just wish to steer them into the wrong programmes and enrol them in schools that do not qualify them for work permits after graduation. Students frequently arrive in Canada before realising they have been deceived.
To be eligible for a PGWP, both your school and the programme you are enrolled in must be approved.
Check here to see if the school is qualified for a PGWP. If you are unsure whether your educational programme qualifies for PGWP, contact the institution to confirm. This is extremely important.
Also, the length of the programme you complete will affect the length of your PGWP, so plan ahead of time and be aware of your possibilities. More information regarding PGWP can be found here.
Avoid agents that advise you to attend a school without PGWP and promise to hunt for an employer to sponsor you for an open work permit after school. It’s not as simple as they make it out to be.
If you need assistance applying to a designated learning institution, call 0548195708 or message 0551758338 on WhatsApp.
2. Have money set aside for the first several weeks or months
Please have sufficient funds to begin your studies as an international student! Never come empty-handed; you need as much soft landing as possible to begin your adventure. And having money makes it easier to do so.
Have money set aside for the first several weeks or months of your programme. You can only legally work once your programme has begun. You are not permitted to work lawfully if you come (before restart) with the expectation of hustling to spend before school begins.
I know it’s difficult to hear, but don’t breach the law; the penalties might be serious!
Check Also: How To Study in Canada for Free in 2023
3. When will you be able to begin working in Canada?
More information regarding working while a student in Canada can be found here.
It is also less stressful when you are working to save money and cover future expenses. This is why it is generally suggested that students have sufficient funds for tuition, rent, and other expenditures during their first term (equivalent to their first four months in Canada).
What is the significance of this? Tuition and rent are required as soon as you arrive in Canada, so having first-term expenses will relieve some of the stress.
Make plans to avoid becoming stranded.
4. How many hours can you work as a student in Canada?
You can only work 20 hours per week outside of school as a student. This is when school is in session and you are enrolled in classes. Furthermore, you can work full-time during specified breaks.
You know what else is fascinating, though? Canada made this so nice that you can work within the school even if you have 20 hours of job outside of school. When school is in session, the work you do inside does not count towards your 20 hours of work.
More information can be found here
5. Changing School/program after arriving in Canada
After arriving in Canada, you can change your school or programme or defer the start of your programme.
Please keep in mind that you cannot defer school because you want to work first and then start school later. It has already been explained in the preceding paragraph. You can only start working once your programme has begun.
Make sure you do it after arriving in Canada if you wish to completely change schools. This would imply that you have already received a second admission or are actively pursuing one before travelling to Canada, allowing you to enrol in a different institution as soon as you land and obtain your study permission.
Additionally, you must notify IRCC via your IRCC application portal that you have changed schools. The process to follow is explained here.
You will need to reapply for a new study visa if you switch schools after your visa has been approved and before you arrive in Canada. This is because when you switched schools, you were still outside of Canada. You can get more information about this here. Keep as far away from this as you can.
After arriving in Canada, you can defer the start of your programme with the consent of your school, which must also provide valid justification. This is crucial since you must be enrolled and actively taking classes at all times if you’re a foreign student.
6. Leave from studies
Students may be required or may wish to take leave from their studies while in Canada. For the purpose of assessing if a student is actively pursuing their studies, any leave taken from a program of studies in Canada should not exceed 150 days from the date the leave commenced and must be authorized by their DLI.
A student on leave who begins or resumes their studies within 150 days from the date the leave commenced (that is, the date the leave was granted by the institution) is considered to be actively pursuing studies during their leave.
There are many reasons why a student may request study leave. This is explained in Section D here.
7. Understand when it is appropriate to renew, extend, or change your status.
This is quite crucial. Some students may require passport and visa renewals, extensions of study permits, or a change of status in Canada. So, always keep the expiration date of your visa or permit in mind.
The law requires you to maintain a valid status at all times and suggests that you apply for a visa or permit extension at least 30 days before the current one expires.
This is to provide you ample time to renew your visa before your existing one expires or to ensure that you are covered by maintained status.
It is also never too early to start thinking about how to become a permanent resident of Canada if it is something that interests you.
Finally, keep in mind that as a bearer of a study permit, you are a temporary resident. You still have a ways to go. Don’t let any short-term gain deprive you of Canada’s long-term advantages. Although IRCC might not respond right away, they know where to wait for you.
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