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Work in Canada after your studies

Find out how international students can stay and build their careers in Canada. As an international student who graduated from a Canadian college or university, there are different options for you to live and work here.

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Post-graduation work permit

Graduates from certain post-secondary schools can get work experience in Canada with the post-graduation work permit (PGWP). The PGWP is temporary. The work experience you get through the program may help support your application to become a permanent resident of Canada.

Starting February 15, 2024, students who graduate from master’s degree programs of less than 2 years (8 months minimum) may be eligible for a 3 year PGWP.

The length of your PGWP depends on the level and duration of your study program, as well as the expiry date of your passport, whichever comes first.

Learn more about the PGWP from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC):

Transition period for distance learning measures for the PGWP

If your courses were moved online due to the pandemic, the time you spend studying online from within Canada until August 31, 2023, still counts toward the length of your PGWP. However, it’s highly recommended that you attend in-class options when offered. For more information, read more about distance learning measures from IRCC.

Extension of post-graduation work permits for up to 18 months

Starting April 6, 2023, international graduates with a recently expired or expiring PGWP will qualify for an additional or extended work permit to stay longer and gain additional work experience for up to 18 months.

For more information, read the news release from IRCC.

Express Entry

Graduates with work experience may be able to settle in Canada permanently by applying for Express Entry. You may be eligible based on your education, skills, work experience and language abilities. Learn more about Express Entry from IRCC:

Provincial Nominee Program

Graduates may be able to settle in Canada permanently by applying for the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). Each province and territory has its own programs and requirements. If you want to live in a particular province or territory, you may be eligible for their programs based on your education, skills and work experience. Learn more about the PNP from IRCC:

Find out if you’re eligible for another type of permit

Most people need a work permit to work in Canada. For more information, find out if you need a work permit from IRCC.

Learn more

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If you’re hoping to settle in Canada after your studies, find paths to permanent residency and immigration.

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