If you seek to extend your stay In Canada after you’ve completed your studies, what you need is the post-graduation work permit (PGWP). But in case you don’t know how to go about that, we’ve covered all the steps you need. Read on to know more.
Canada is a land of opportunity for international students seeking higher education. With a strong and growing economy, a welcoming multicultural society, and world-class universities, students from around the globe are attracted to this beautiful country.
However, for international students who have completed their studies in Canada, obtaining a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) is an important step towards building a career and establishing themselves in the country.
In this article, we will discuss the reasons to apply for a PGWP, eligibility requirements, length of the PGWP, when to apply for PGWP, and other questions you may have regarding the PGWP
What is the Post-Graduation Work Permit?
The post-graduation work permit (PGWP) is an open work permit that allows you to work in Canada after completing your studies.
This is given for a period that can vary, depending on the length of the program you just completed, up to a maximum of three years.
However, the PGWP is not job- or employer-specific, meaning that after you have obtained the permit, you can work in any occupation and for any employer, anywhere in Canada.
Why Do I Apply for a Post Graduation Work Permit in Canada?
The PGWP allows international students to work in Canada after they complete their studies. This work experience can help you gain valuable skills, earn money, and develop a network of professional contacts. Moreover, a PGWP can also be a pathway to permanent residency in Canada.
The work experience obtained during the PGWP can also be valuable in increasing your job prospect, which can help you build a career in Canada.
What is the Post Graduate Work Permit Validity?
The validity of a post graduation work permit depends on the length of the program you just completed. If you have completed a program of study that is at least eight months but less than two years long, you can apply for a PGWP that is valid for the same length of time as the program completed.
For example, if the program you completed is 12 months long, the PGWP will be valid for 12 months. However, if you have completed a program of study that is two years or longer, you can apply for a PGWP that is valid for three years.
Furthermore, it is important to note that the PGWP is applicable to both distance learning students (online learning) outside or within Canada, and all those in a designated learning institution DLI.
How to Apply for The PGWP
To apply for a PGWP, you must have completed a program of study at a Designated Learning Institution (DLI) in Canada. DLIs are institutions that have been approved by the Canadian government to host international students.
The application can be submitted online or through the mail. The processing time for a PGWP is typically around four to five months. We will discuss this in a later section.
Post-Graduation Work Permit Eligibility Requirements
To be eligible for a PGWP, international students must meet certain requirements. These include:
1. Be 18 years or above
2. Completion of a program of study at a DLI in Canada that is at least eight months long.
3. A valid study permit when applying for the PGSP
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4. Posses a valid study permit at the time of the application.
5 Your application must be made within 90 days of your graduation
6. Complete the program within 180 days of the date of the final transcript.
7. You must not be a beneficiary in the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) or other PGWP programs.
8. No previous participation in a PGWP program that was issued for a duration of eight months or more.
Although, if you do not meet these eligibility requirements, you may be eligible for other work permits or immigration programs, such as the CEC or the Express Entry system.
Exceptional Eligibility Requirements
However, there are some special cases which can make you qualified for this program even if you don’t meet the requirements listed above. These exceptions are:
- you are enrolled in an accelerator program with an initial end date of 8 months but finished by 6month, the PGWP will be issued based on the initial date on your student visa.
- If you transferred from one DLI to another. If the combined length of study for both institutions equals 8 months or more, then you. An apply for the PGWP.
- If you transferred from a non DLI institution to a DLI institution and studied for 8 months.
- In a case where you are a flight instructor. However, to qualify, you must have completed a course for flight training at a Canadian training center and have a Canadian commercial pilot license.
Post-Graduation Work Permit Applicants and Travel
International students who apply for a Post Graduation work permit are to remain in Canada until a decision is made on their application. However, if you choose to leave Canada before , you wont be allowed to re-enter Canada until it is issued.
However, if you have a PGWP, you are free to leave and re-enter Canada during the validity period of the permit.
Application Process for Post-graduation Work Permit (PGWP) in Canada
Like we mentioned earlier, If you are an international student who has recently completed your studies in Canada, you may be eligible to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP).
Follow these steps to get started:
Step 1: Determine your Eligibility
Before applying for a PGWP, you must ensure that you meet the eligibility requirements. You can check the section on eligibility requirements in case you missed this.
Step 2: Gather required Documents
To apply for a PGWP, you will need to provide various documents, including:
- A valid passport or travel document
- Valid study permit
- A letter of completion or official transcript from your school
- Proof of eligibility to apply, such as a letter from your school confirming that you have completed your program
Step 3: Apply online
The easiest way to apply for a PGWP is online through the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website. You need to create an account with IRCC and complete the online application, providing all the required information and uploading the necessary documents.
Step 4: Pay the Application Fee
When you submit your application, you will be required to pay an application fee. As published by the website, cic.gc.ca, The fee for a post-graduation work permit is CDN$155; however, you must also pay the CDN$100.00 “Open Work Permit Holder” fee.
Step 5: Wait for a Decision
After you submit your application, you will receive a confirmation of receipt from IRCC. The processing time for a PGWP can vary, but it usually takes around 4-5 months. During this time, IRCC may contact you for additional information or to request an interview.
Step 6: Receive your work permit
If your application is approved, you will receive your PGWP by mail. The length of the permit will depend on the length of your program of study.
Applying from Inside Canada
If you are already in Canada when applying for a PGWP, you can stay in the country until a decision is made on your application. However, if your study permit expires while your PGWP application is being processed, you can apply to extend your study permit.
Applying from Outside Canada
However, if you are outside Canada when you applied for a Post Graduation work permit, you will need to apply for a work permit to return to Canada while your PGWP application is being processed.
Frequently Asked Questions
When do I Apply for a Post Graduation Work permit?
You can apply for a PGWP up to 180 days after you’ve received your final marks or after you’ve received written confirmation that you met the requirements of your program.
It is important to apply as soon as possible after completing the program, as the 180-day period starts from the date of completion.
Can I Work While Applying for the PGWP?
Yes you can! If you have completed your studies and have a valid study permit, you can work full-time while waiting for a decision on your PGWP application.
How do I Apply for a Post Graduation Work permit?
To apply for a PGWP, you must have an account with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) and submit an online application. You will need to provide your personal information, passport details, study permit information, and proof of completion of your program of study, such as a transcript or a letter from the institution.
What Happens after I’ve Applied for the PGWP?
After your application, you will receive a confirmation of receipt from IRCC. The processing time for a PGWP can vary, but it usually takes around 4-5 months.
The post-graduate work permit is an excellent option for international students seeking to gain Canadian work experience and potentially qualify for permanent residency. It provides flexibility in terms of job options and employer choices, as well as the opportunity to build a career in Canada.
As the Canadian government continues to make changes to the program in response to economic factors and global events, it is important for students to stay informed of the eligibility requirements and application processes.
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