Are you an international student studying in Canada? Wondering how you can work part-time while pursuing your studies? Look no further! With Canada’s welcoming immigration policy, you can gain valuable work experience while pursuing your education.
This guide will walk you through the ins and outs of working during your time as an international student in Canada.
What is Off-Campus Work?
Off-campus work lets you work for employers outside your school. It’s a fantastic way to gain experience and earn extra income while studying.
How Many Hours Can You Work?
- During regular academic sessions: Up to 20 hours per week.
- During breaks (holidays, etc.): Full-time.
Special Update: Increased Work Hours Starting from November 15, 2022, until December 31, 2023, eligible international students can work more than 20 hours per week during class sessions. This is aimed at helping address labor shortages.
Eligibility for Off-Campus Work
You can work off-campus if you:
- Have a valid study permit.
- Are a full-time student at a designated learning institution.
- Maintain good academic standing.
- Enroll in a program lasting at least six months, leading to a degree, diploma, or certificate.
- Obtain a Social Insurance Number (SIN).
If the situation of an international student changes and he or she no longer meets any of the above eligibility requirements, he or she must stop working off-campus.
Can You Still Work Off-Campus if You’re Part-Time?
If you started as a full-time international student and are now in your last semester, you can still work off-campus, even if you’re part-time. This flexibility acknowledges your journey through your program.
Who’s Not Eligible for Off-Campus Work?
You cannot work off-campus if you are:
- Enrolled in English or French language programs (ESL or FSL).
- Taking general interest courses.
- An exchange student at a designated learning institution.
How Full-Time Status is Determined
Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) assesses your full-time status based on the hours and credits allocated toward completing your degree, diploma, or certificate, as determined by your designated learning institution.
What is On-Campus Work?
On-campus work means working within your school’s premises. It’s convenient and can offer a great experience.
Eligibility For On-Campus Work
You can work on-campus without a work permit if you:
- Hold a valid Study Permit.
- Have a Social Insurance Number (SIN).
- Are registered full-time at a designated institution, like a college, university, or certain private schools.
Who’s Considered an On-Campus Employer?
Who can you work for on campus? The list includes:
- The School: Your educational institution itself can be your employer.
- Faculty Members: Professors and faculty members offer opportunities for roles like research assistants.
- Student Organizations: Engage with student organizations and gain valuable leadership experience.
- Campus Businesses: Businesses operating within campus boundaries also offer employment opportunities.
- Private Contractors: Those providing services to the school, and even self-employment on campus, are viable options.
What are Co-op and Intern Work Permits?
If your program includes mandatory work placements or internships, you’ll need a co-op or intern work permit, along with your study permit.
Spouses and Partners of International Students
Remember, working while studying can be a rewarding experience, both professionally and financially. Make sure to follow the guidelines and requirements to make the most of your time as an international student in Canada. Good luck on your academic and professional journey!