The number of Indian students interested in studying in Canada has soared over the last three years. In 2008, 3,000 Indian students applied for a Canadian student visa . By 2010, this figure rose to 12,000 and is expected to double again by 2013. This can be credited to friendly visa policies and several initiatives taken by the Canadian government to attract Indian students to its universities. More recently, student visa applications from India have been put on the ‘fast-track’ system, thus accelerating the processing of requests.
How long will it take to get a student visa?
Student visas take 15 working days or 3 weeks to be processed.
How much does it cost?
A study permit costs INR 5,470, plus processing charges.
Can I work while I study?
International students are permitted to work in Canada while they study – both on and off-campus (www.cic.gc.ca/english/study/work.asp). Full-time students with a valid Study Permit can work on-campus without requiring a work permit. This applies to all full-time students enrolled at a public university, community college, vocational college, a publicly funded trade or technical school, or a private institution.
To work off-campus, international students need to apply for a work permit, as part of the Off-Campus Work Permit Program. This permit allows students to work for 20 hours per week during term time and full-time during holidays and semester breaks. International students who wish to work off-campus while studying as a full-time student in Canada should visit www.cic.gic.ca to find out whether their university permits off-campus work for international students – some may not.
How do I gain some work experience?
Certain programs in Canada give students an opportunity to get some work experience. You might do an internship or a practicum (unpaid volunteer work), and Co-Op placements offer work experience which is relevant to your subject of study. These require you to possess both a Study Permit and a Work Permit.
Can I work after graduation?
International students graduating from Canadian universities are actively encouraged to take up employment in the country. The Post-Graduation Work Permit Program offers you a work permit for a period of time equal to the duration of your course, for a maximum of 3 years. For instance, if you complete a one year course in Canada, you will be granted a one year Post-Graduation Work Permit. With this type of work permit, you can work anywhere and switch jobs any time you like. You must apply within 90 days of graduating.
What about immigration opportunities?
The Canadian Experience Class immigration program encourages international students graduating from Canadian universities to take up temporary residence, or even become permanent residents of the country. To become a permanent resident of Canada, you need to have worked at least for one year in Canada with a valid work permit. For this to be valid, your job must qualify as a Skill Type 0 or Skill Level A or B occupation under the National Occupational Classification (NOC) system.
Can I bring my family along?
Canada allows you to bring your spouse or partner with you. Your spouse/partner can also work while you are still a student.
Bear in mind…
• March to June are the busiest time of the year, so it’s advisable to apply early in order to get a response within the right timeframe.
• Study permit applications received after August 15, 2011 for programs beginning in September 2011 will not normally be processed in time, and are likely be refused outright
Canadian High Commission, 7/8 Shantipath Chanakyapuri, New Delhi-110021
Telephone: (91-11) 4178-2050Canada Consulate General, Chandigarh
Sector 17A, Chandigarh-160017
Telephone: (91-172) 5050350VFS Canada