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Deadline to apply for PGWP moves for students of college programs with public-private curriculum licensing agreement

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has advanced the deadline for Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) applications for graduates from college programs involved in public-private curriculum licensing agreements.

Initially set for September 1, 2024, this deadline has been moved up to May 15, 2024.

This adjustment means that international students graduating from such programs after May 15 will not qualify for the PGWP.

This update comes amidst IRCC’s broader efforts to ensure the quality of education provided to international students, following findings from the Auditor General of Ontario highlighting concerns over educational standards and student services at certain institutions. The change aims to steer international student enrollment towards programs with more rigorous quality controls.

IRCC also hints at a potential impact on enrollment numbers in these programs, given the PGWP’s importance for students planning to gain work experience in Canada after graduation. However, it’s noted that affected students might explore alternative work permit options, as IRCC collaborates with provincial and territorial partners to monitor and adjust the affected programs list.

In addition to the PGWP eligibility shift for certain college program graduates, IRCC introduced other significant changes to the PGWP criteria on January 22, 2024. Notably, graduates from master’s programs lasting less than eight months can now receive a three-year PGWP, aligning the permit’s validity more closely with the duration of the academic program completed.

The PGWP is crucial for international graduates looking to gain Canadian work experience, often serving as a stepping stone towards permanent residency. It allows graduates from Canadian Designated Learning Institutions to work for almost any employer across the country, emphasizing Canada’s commitment to integrating international talent into its workforce and supporting students’ transition from education to professional employment.


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