Study and Work

Work While Studying

Another good news is that you can work up to 20 hours a week while studying and up to 40 hours per week during the winter and summer holidays or spring break. In Canada, the minimum hourly wage varies from C$11.06 to C$15.00 depending on the province or territory.

To be able to work in Canada, you need to apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN) at a Service Canada Centre.

There are several ways to work in Canada while studying:

  • On-campus work: you can work at the campus where you attend classes or (if you are working as an assistant) at a library, hospital or research centre that is part of the college or university
  • Off-campus work: you can work part-time or full-time with a private business or government department
  • Co-op placements: when you are part of a co-op program at a college or university, you need to apply for a co-op work permit
  • Internships: you’re required to get a work permit for on-the-job training

Thus, with plenty of saving and working options available, almost everyone can afford to study in Canada.

Working after Graduation

In most cases, to be able to stay in Canada after graduation, you need to gain work experience first. A post-graduation work permit (PGWP) will allow you to work temporarily in Canada. It may be issued based on the length of the study program for a minimum of 8 months up to a maximum of 3 years (winter and summer breaks should be included in the time).

To obtain a PGWP, you must meet all of these criteria:

  • To have completed a minimum 8-months program at an eligible institution in Canada. Keep in mind that not all schools make you eligible for the PGWP. You can check the list of designated institutions on website
  • To have a degree, diploma or certificate from this institution
  • To have maintained full-time student status in Canada during the whole period of study

Within 180 days of the date of applying for the PGWP, you must also hold a valid study permit or to be authorized to study in Canada without the requirement to obtain a study permit.

After having worked in Canada for at least one year, you can apply for permanent residence under one of the federal or provincial programs for Canadian universities graduates. Some provinces (including Ontario) provide permanent residence for master’s graduates, without requiring a work contract.

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