Immigration Information

All immigration information for international students can be found on the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) website or by calling 1-888-242-2100.

Under Section 91 of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA), “Education agents, recruiters and employees at educational institutions, who are paid to provide services to their clients, are prohibited from providing advice to students…with regard to immigration applications, such as visas or student work permits.  As a result, they may not explain or advise a person on their immigration options, complete and submit immigration forms on a client’s behalf, communicate with CIC on a client’s behalf (except for the direct translation of a client’s written or spoken submissions), represent a client in an immigration application or advertise that they can provide immigration advice” (Bob Brack, President & CEO of Citizenship and Immigration Canada, June 20, 2013).

In order to study in Canada you will need your Letter of Admissions along with your passport to process your study permit/visa application at your local Canadian Embassy or Consulate. Please go to the IRCC website for details on applying for a visa/study permit and working in Canada. This website has helpful information about work permits for students, information for after you graduate, and for applying for permanent residency. If you are interested in staying in Canada after you graduate, please be aware that the length of study will determine the length you will be granted to remain in Canada after graduation. It is a requirement of CIC that international students study full time.

Study permits  

By Canadian law, international students are required to obtain a valid Study Permit from IRCC. The study permit is a document that IRCC issues to allow foreign nationals to study at designated learning institutions (DLIs) in Canada. To apply, visit IRCC Study Permit Application.

Entry visas – Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)

Also known as a re-entry visa or visitor visa, this is the visa that is stuck like a sticker into your passport. Most people need a visa or an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to travel to Canada. To find out whether this is required from your country, check the IRCC website for a list of visa exempt countries.

Co-op Work Permits

Some study programs include work experience as part of their curriculum. You can apply for a co-op or intern work permit if:

  • you have a valid study permit
  • work is required to complete your study program in Canada
  • you have a letter from your school that confirms all students in your program need to complete work placements to get their degree, and
  • your co-op placement or internship totals 50% or less of your study program

International students who wish to participate in a co-op or placement program must apply for a work permit at the port of entry or via online application (there is no fee for this application). For more information, visit IRCC Placement Work Permit.

ATTENTION: Temporary Exemption on Co-op Work Permit:

From November 15, 2022, to December 31, 2023, you may not need to apply for a co-op work permit. You don’t need a co-op work permit to complete your co-op placement if you meet all of the following conditions:

  • You have a valid study permit and IRCC received your application for this study permit on or before October 7, 2022.
  • Your study permit shows that you’re authorized to work off campus.
  • You’re eligible to benefit from the temporary policy change to work more than 20 hours per week while class is in session.
  • Your co-op placement ends by December 31, 2023.

If your co-op placement ends after December 31, 2023, or if you aren’t eligible for the temporary policy change, you need to apply for a co-op work permit to cover the period after that date. You can begin your co-op placement during this period before you’re issued the permit. Any other employment you have won’t be affected.

More information can be found here

Working while in Canada

International students will now automatically be provided their work permit upon entry into Canada, which will allow the student to work legally upon arrival after securing a job. There are also various jobs on campus that international students can apply for, but employment is not guaranteed. Loyalist College has a Career Centre where available jobs are advertised and staff are able to assist students as they are looking for work in a new culture. Minimum wage in Ontario is $15 per hour.

On Campus

You can only start working in Canada when you start your study program. You can’t work before your studies begin.

  • Jobs on campus are limited. It is each student’s responsibility to find their own job. We recommend that you arrive early for the semester and have a C.V. or résumé ready to give to potential College employers.
  • Working on campus is an opportunity to interact with the College community and earn valuable Canadian work experience. You should not rely on a student job to support yourself financially while living in Canada.
  • International students must receive approval from the International Centre to work on campus. You must be in good standing with the College and maintain a GPA of 60% or higher depending on the position’s requirements.

For more information, visit IRCC – Work on campus

Off Campus

You can work as an international student in Canada if your study permit lists a condition that says you’re allowed to work on- or off-campus.

  • Students can apply for an off-campus work permit through Citizenship and Immigration Canada.
  • The off-campus work permit would allow you to work 20 hrs./week during school sessions and full time during scheduled breaks. Please find the Official Scheduled Academic Breaks – Belleville Campus
  • Each student is responsible for finding their own employment.

For more information, visit IRCC– Work off campus.

For more information to prepare you for working in Canada, please contact the Career Centre

Maintained Status 

If you have applied for a new immigration status but it will not arrive before your current status expires, you may be able to stay, study, and/or work in Canada during this time. This is known as ‘maintained status’ (previously ‘implied status’).
This could occur if you are:

Extending the same status

If you are extending your immigration status and have submitted your application before your current status expires, your application will be accepted (for example, you have a study permit and apply to extend your study permit before expiry)

NOTE: If you do not apply to extend your stay in Canada before your current status expires, you must immediately stop studying and working and apply to restore your status, if eligible.

Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)

The Post-Graduation Work Permit Program (PGWPP) allows students who have graduated from eligible Canadian designated learning institutions (DLIs) to obtain an open work permit to gain valuable Canadian work experience. For more information on application process, please check the IRCC PGWPP web page.

Ontario Immigration Facebook page

The Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration Facebook page, Ontario Immigration (English)/Immigration Ontario (French), provides immigrants and newcomers with general information and customer service. Learn more about: 

  • The Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP)
  • Events, programs and services
  • How and where to settle in Ontario
  • Getting licensed in a profession in order to work
  • Language training

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes. You will not be able to start classes on campus without an approved study permit. Please refer to the Travel to Canada web page.

IRCC recommends submitting applications online (paper application can delay the process). Processing time may be longer than usual; however, submitting an application before a study permit expires activates “Maintained Status” (previously called Implied Status) which allows students to continue studies and work under current study permit conditions until a decision is made. Students are encouraged to refer the IRCC Guide 5552 for help with online applications.

Please visit the student form webpage for more information about study permit extension letters.

Most people must apply online to extend their study permit from within Canada. You should submit an application to extend your study permit before your current permit expires.

Students in Canada will not have their PGWP eligibility affected by taking online courses due to shifts in the course delivery method due to COVID-19 temporary policy.

Students outside Canada are also eligible for PGWP if:

  • they have a valid study permit or a study permit application that is submitted/in process or has been approved.
  • they are in a PGWP eligible program that was in progress during March 2020 OR
  • a PGWP eligible program that started between Spring 2020 and Summer 2022
  • they complete 100% of studies online prior to August 31, 2022

As a co-op student, your co-op work permit might say:

  • you’re “not authorized to work for any employer other than stated”
  • your school is your employer

This is to identify you as a co-op student. It means you can work for any employer that’s accepted by your school’s co-op program.

Please follow the instructions on the IRCC web page here. Make sure you have a valid GCKey account to access the IRCC portal to submit your request.

It is important that your study permit has your information matching with your personal information on your passport. If there is spelling error you can request IRCC to correct them on your permit. Your work permit reflects exactly the name of your employer, your occupation and your working location (city) in Canada. If this information is incorrect during an inspection, it could result in the loss of your ability to work in Canada, and your employer could be fined. More information can be found here.

Students can request for verification of enrollment letter for current semester as a supporting document for visa applications of their family member. Eligible graduating students will be notified of when and how to receive convocation letter via email.

Useful IRCC Links for Students