IRCC (Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada) has made several changes to help foreign students pursue an education in Canada.
International students bring with them great economic and social benefits. Hence, Canada aims to bring in more international students to the country. Prior to the COVI19 situation, Canada had more than 640,000 foreign students pursuing their education in the country.
IRCC recently issued a news release stating that:
- The IRCC will prioritize Study Permit applications of those international students who have submitted a completed application online. Prioritizing such applications will help process their Study Permit as quickly as possible.
- For those who could not submit a completed application, IRCC will introduce a two-stage approval process. This process will apply to international students who want to begin their education program online or who want to begin their education in fall this year. Applications submitted before 15th September 2020 will be considered.
- IRCC has also enabled international students to begin their Canadian studies online even when they were outside of Canada. The time abroad, while they were pursuing online education, will still be counted towards their Post-Graduate Work Permit eligibility. However, these students must have submitted a Study Permit application and should have completed at least 50% of their courses within Canada.
If you have already submitted a completed application for a Canada Study Permit, rest assured that the IRCC will soon begin processing. You should receive your Study Permit well in time before the fall session begins.
Why is IRCC helping international students?
IRCC is making these changes to help foreign students begin their study programs in time for the Fall 2020 session.
IRCC recognizes that the global pandemic situation is creating a lot of uncertainty for international students. The pandemic has also increased the processing time for Canada Study Permits. However, these new changes will help internationals students begin their programs online at a designated learning institution in Canada.
Benefits to international students
The new changes introduced by IRCC will be very beneficial to foreign students. International students can rejoice at the news that they will be able to begin their Canadian education online without compromising their health and safety. They will not be losing valuable time which will help meet their career and immigration objectives.
For those who wish to begin their study program in fall, the IRCC will try to process their Study Permits as soon as possible. If an international student is unable to submit a completed application, the IRCC will still pre-approve it provided the student meets the eligibility criteria.
Preference will be given to international students:
- Want to come to Canada for its high quality of education
- The student is attracted by the ample number of job opportunities available in Canada
- The student intends to apply for the Canada PR Visa process in future and thereon become a citizen of Canada
How to get pre-approval for the Canada Study Permit?
Students who pass the first stage will receive an approval in-principle from the IRCC.
For the first stage, an international student must:
- Have an acceptance letter from an educational institute in Canada
- Those who intend to study in Quebec must have a certificate of acceptance from Quebec
- Have proof of funds
- Must prove that the student wants to come to Canada only for study. The student will leave Canada if they no longer hold a temporary or permanent status and will not stay back in Canada unlawfully.
- Preference will be given to students who have family ties in Canada
For the second stage, IRCC officers will assess the following before making a final decision:
- Immigration medical examination
- Police clearance certificates
International students will be allowed to travel to Canada once they receive their Study Permit.
The international student population brings with it immense financial and social gain. Not only do the students gain top-class education and a chance of becoming a Permanent Resident, but Canada also earns a lot of revenue from these students making the Canadian economy stronger.
International students who complete their education in Canada become eligible to apply for the Post-Graduate Work Permit. The PGWP has a validity of up to 3 years and students can work full-time on a PGWP earning valuable Canadian work experience.
International students can use the Express Entry pathway or the PNP pathway to, later on, gain Permanent Residency of Canada. Canadian education and work experience are worth additional points in the Comprehensive Ranking System of the Express Entry Program. Hence, international students are able to score a higher CRS score as compared to other eligible applicants. You may use a CRS calculator to check your own score.
As per IRCC, nearly 60,000 international students obtain the Canada PR Visa every year.