How to Extend Your Time in Canada as an International Student

New Options for International Students to Remain in Canada Post-Graduation

Canada is launching two new temporary permanent residence pathways for international student graduates looking to extend their stay in Canada after they graduate.

The goal of these new pathways is to make it easier for skilled international students to fill labour shortages, and aid in Canada’s post-pandemic economic recovery.

Both pathways will be available to international students that currently live anywhere in Canada outside of Quebec, or are planning to live outside Quebec.

Details About These New Programs

The first immigration pathway will be available to all international students who have recently graduated with a Canadian post-secondary degree or diploma. Only 40,000 applications will be accepted through the temporary program. If the government has accepted 40,000 applications before November 5, 2021, it will stop accepting applications before the cutoff date. 

The second pathway will only be available to French-speaking international graduates. There will be no cap on intake for this pathway, due to the shortage of French-speaking skilled workers outside of Quebec.

Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible for either pathway, applicants must have graduated from a Canadian designated learning institution no earlier than January 2017, and received an educational credential.

The credential could be obtained from a Canadian university, college, trade/technical school, or a Quebec CEGEP.

University credentials include:

  • Associate’s degrees
  • Bachelor’s degrees
  • Master’s degrees
  • Doctorates

College credentials must be obtained through a program of study that is at least eight months long, and can include:

  • Degrees
  • Diplomas
  • Certificates
  • Attestations

For applicants with diplomas of Vocational Studies (DVS) or Attestations of Vocational Specialization (AVS), they must have completed a program that is at least 900 hours in length.

Additional eligibility requirements include:

  • The applicant must be employed in Canada with a valid work permit or have authorization to work at the time the application is received.
  • The applicant must speak French or English, and meet the mandatory language requirements by obtaining a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) of 5.
  • The applicant must live in Canada legally and meet the relevant admissibility requirements.
  • The applicant must not be considered inadmissible to Canada for criminal or medical reasons.
  • The applicant must have an intermediate level of French comprehension in all four language skills (reading, writing, speaking, listening) for the French permanent resident pathway.

Both permanent resident pathways will begin accepting applications on May 6 and will remain open until November 5.