Post-graduation employment program as of May 16, 2005
Starting on May 16, 2005, the pilot projects allowing a second year of post-graduation employment have been extended to all of Canada except for the Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver metropolitan areas (MTV).
Students may accept education-related employment for a maximum period of one or two years (depending on which set of criteria they meet) following successful completion of their studies, without the need for Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) confirmation (work permit with C43 exemption from HRSDC).
General eligibility criteria
- The student must have graduated from a program at a Canadian university, community college, CEGEP, publicly funded trade/technical school or at a Canadian private institution authorized by provincial statute to confer degrees.
- They must have been engaged in full-time studies.
- Whether the student received a ‘degree’, a ‘diploma’ or a ‘certificate’ is not an issue. However, they must have completed and passed their course of study or program, and the full-time program of study must have been for a duration of at least eight months.
- The application must be submitted within 90 days of formal written notification by the institution to the student that they have met the requirements of the course of study or program. Students who have evidence that they have completed their program (e.g., final transcript, letter from the institution) may apply for the work permit before this formal notification.
- The work permit application should include evidence that the student has completed all of the requirements for the course of study or program. This may include a final transcript, letter from the institution or the formal notification of graduation.
- The work permit application should include a valid employment offer.
- The employment must be consistent with the recently completed course of study (refer to “field of study” below).
- The student must still be in possession of a valid study permit upon application.
- The student must not have been formerly issued a work permit under this program (exemption C43) following any other course of study.
Work permit issuance and validity
Officers will issue work permits up to the maximum allowable period, depending on eligibility criteria. Therefore, some applicants will be issued two-year work permits. Officers should no longer follow the previous practice of issuing one-year permits and requiring that students submit an application to extend this work permit for an additional year.
Applicants will continue to be issued work permits according to the regular C43 requirements (i.e., employer, occupation and location-specific).
Field of study
The intended employment should be consistent with the recently completed program of study. When this is less evident, but an officer is satisfied that the offer is genuine and the work experience meaningful to the student’s overall experience in Canada, benefit of doubt should be given to the student.
Length of work permit
The permit can be valid for up to two years for students who
- have studied at and graduated from an institutions located outside of MTV, and
- have an offer of employment where the location of the work is outside of MTV.
All other students will be issued a work permit that can be valid for up to one year.
The validity period of the work permit must not be longer than the period the graduating student studied at the particular post-secondary institution in Canada, up to a maximum of one or two years. For example, if a student graduated from a four-year degree program, they are eligible for a one-year work permit or a two-year permit if they meet the criteria described above. If the student graduated from an eight-month certificate program, they are only eligible for a work permit of eight months’ duration. Thus, to obtain a two-year work permit, a student must have studied for at least two academic years.
Extensions beyond the post-graduation work program will require HRSDC confirmation, or approval under another exemption.
Students receiving funding from the following sources can receive a post-graduation work permit, but its validity will not exceed one year:
- Canadian Commonwealth Scholarship Program,
- Government of Canada Awards Program funded either by Foreign Affairs Canada or by the Canadian International Development Agency.
In cases where a student has transferred between educational institutions, the student must have graduated from an institution described in the general eligibility criteria above, and the combined time in institutions meeting these criteria must be at least eight months. To qualify for a two-year work permit, the combined studies must amount to a minimum of two years, all of which must have been located outside MTV (including graduation).
In cases where students already have a one-year post-graduation work permit, they can apply for an extension to their permit. They cannot have been employed in MTV since their graduation and must have graduated from an institution located outside of MTV. They must have studied at least two years for a full year extension. They cannot have already received an extension under the post-graduation pilot projects.
In cases where students have received their work permit in the context of the post-graduation pilot projects, the obligation to stay within the province of study is lifted. If they secure another job offer in another province, they can apply for a change of employer on their work permit.
If the student of an institution which is located outside MTV is studying on the institution’s campus which is located within MTV, they will be eligible for a one-year work permit only. For example, the Université de Sherbrooke student located at the Longueuil campus cannot benefit from a two-year work permit.
Defining Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver
For the purposes of this program, the metropolitan areas of Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver are defined as: