Changes to Canada’s study permit system and its implications

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By Vantage Migration

Over the past few years, Canada has made some big changes to its immigration system. These changes have been made in response to what’s happening around the world and the needs of their country. The goal is to make the immigration process smoother, bring in skilled workers, and deal with slow population growth. Canada is focusing more on economic immigration and taking a more proactive approach. To make sure that newcomers fit in well and succeed in Canada, the government has put in place different policies and programs.
An interesting feature of Canada’s immigration system is its study route. The government has realized the great advantages of attracting international students and has made efforts to make Canada a desirable educational destination. The focus of this article is on the recent changes made to the study route and the consequences of such for both individuals who wish to study in Canada and for the country as a whole. Let’s delve into these implications further.

Canada’s study route

The study route is an important aspect of Canada’s immigration system, as it offers international students a unique chance to acquire Canadian qualifications, gain work experience, and immerse themselves in the country’s culture. Upon completing their studies, these international graduates have the opportunity to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit, which enables them to work in Canada for a maximum of up to three years.
The benefits of the study route extend beyond the students themselves. Spouses, partners, and children of international students are also allowed to accompany them to Canada. This allows the entire family to experience the country’s diverse culture and pursue their own educational and career goals. In essence, the study route not only offers international students access to a world-class education but also presents them with incredible career prospects and the potential for permanent residency in Canada.

Benefits of studying in Canada

One of the key advantages of studying in Canada is the affordability of tuition fees compared with other countries. This makes it more accessible for international students to pursue their academic aspirations without incurring a heavy financial burden. To be sure, universities such as the University of Toronto and McGill University may offer programmes whose tuition rates for international students are on the high side, but a diligent search will reveal plenty of other institutions that offer low tuition. Educational consultancy companies such as Vantage Migration, amongst others, organize Master classes where students are taught how to search for low-tuition schools in Canada.
You may do well to visit their website – for more information. The advantage this brings is ensuring that education remains within reach for those who choose Canada as their study destination.

Furthermore, Canada prides itself on providing a diverse and inclusive environment for students from all walks of life. With its multicultural society and welcoming attitude towards international students, Canada offers a unique opportunity to learn and grow alongside individuals from various backgrounds. This exposure fosters cross-cultural understanding and enriches the overall learning experience.
The quality of education in Canada is highly regarded globally. Canadian universities boast world-class faculties, experienced professors, and cutting-edge research facilities. For instance, the University of British Columbia is consistently ranked among the top universities in the world for its academic excellence and research contributions. The same goes for institutions mentioned in the above paragraphs (i.e. University of Toronto and McGill University). Studying in such institutions ensures that students receive top-notch education that is recognized internationally.
Changes to the study route (and implications)
One recent change that has had a significant impact on international students is the updated proof of funds requirements. As part of the study permit application process, international students are now required to demonstrate their financial capacity to support themselves while studying in Canada. Previously, students were required to show a minimum amount of C$10,000 per year as proof of financial support, in addition to covering travel and tuition expenses. However, this minimum amount has been adjusted to reflect the rising cost of living in Canada. As of January 1, 2024, the new minimum proof of financial support has been set at C$20,635 for the year. This means that all new study permit applications submitted after this date must meet these updated financial proof requirements.
Second, with effect from December 1, 2023, Canada’s immigration authority (IRCC) now mandates Canadian educational institutions to verify the authenticity of each letter of acceptance they issue. Failure to comply with this requirement within the specified timeframe can result in the rejection and refund of your study permit application. If you are confident that your letter of admission is legitimate, this new regulation is unlikely to have any impact on you. However, if you have any concerns or doubts, it is advisable to reach out to your institution directly to ensure that they will validate your letter within the required timeframe.
Another notable change in the regulations for international students is the increase in permitted work hours. Previously, students were typically limited to working off-campus for 20 hours per week during regular school semesters and 40 hours per week during breaks, such as summer vacation. However, a temporary measure was first introduced in the fall of 2022 that allowed international students to work unlimited hours while classes were in session.
Initially intended to be in effect until December 2023, the increased work hours’ measure has now been extended until April 30, 2024. This extension provides international students with an extended opportunity to work more hours and earn additional income while pursuing their studies in Canada. It also allows them to gain valuable work experience, which can be beneficial for their future career prospects. Furthermore, it is worth noting that the government has indicated the possibility of permanently raising the weekly permitted working hours limit in the future. Although no official announcement has been made yet, this suggests that international students may have even more flexibility in terms of working hours during their time in Canada. This extension of work hours offers international students the chance to not only enhance their financial situation but also gain practical experience in the Canadian job market.

The new proof of funds requirements for international students have brought about important implications. From now on, students must show that they have enough financial resources to support themselves while studying in Canada. In the past, the minimum amount of funds required for proof of financial support was C$10,000 per year, in addition to covering travel and tuition expenses. However, in light of the increasing cost of living in Canada, this minimum amount has been raised. As of January 1, 2024, the new minimum proof of financial support is set at C$20,635 for the year. This means that all new study permit applications submitted after this date must meet these updated financial proof requirements.
The updated proof of funds requirements pose challenges for students who cannot afford to meet the new minimum amount. For those who are unable to demonstrate the required financial capacity, there are alternative options to explore. One option is to seek scholarships, grants, or financial aid opportunities that can provide additional support.
When it comes to scholarships, many international students may face challenges in securing them, even though there are millions of unclaimed scholarship funds each year. There could be various reasons for this, such as a lack of knowledge about available scholarships or not meeting the specific requirements. In such situations, seeking advice from educational consultants can be beneficial.
Some people have indeed had negative experiences with educational consultants and immigration agents, but it’s important to remember that they do not all belong to the same category. There are reputable companies that provide educational consultancy services. For example, Vantage Migration specializes in offering teaching and guidance to students who are seeking admission abroad for graduate programs. They also assist in identifying suitable scholarships and guide how to obtain them. They have helped numerous students in their pursuit of higher education abroad. Visit their website – for more information on how to study abroad on a scholarship.
Students can also consider obtaining a sponsor, such as a family member or a trusted individual, who can provide the necessary financial support. Additionally, some institutions may offer installment payment plans or flexible payment options to assist students in meeting their financial requirements.
Students must be aware of the changes in immigration procedures as the goal of Canada’s immigration system adjustments is to improve the experience for international students. For immigrants seeking access to Canadian degrees, job experience, and the possibility of permanent residency, the study route remains a vital one. Even though some people may find the new Proof of Funds criteria challenging, they are designed to guarantee an effortless relocation and fruitful academic adventure in Canada. The ideas that were briefly mentioned, such as scholarships, can significantly help with the proof of funds requirement.

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