Working while studying in a foreign country can be an exciting and life-changing experience. It provides you with the means to support yourself financially and immerse yourself in the local culture, make new friends, and build valuable professional connections. If you’ve chosen Canada as your study destination, you’re in luck!
The Great White North offers numerous opportunities for international students to work in Canada and gain valuable experience. In this blog post, we’ll explore the ins and outs of working while studying in Canada, helping you make the most of your time there.
The basic eligibility criteria to work in Canada are as follows:
- A valid study permit enrolled full-time in a Designated Learning Institution (DLI),
You have the freedom to work off campus without obtaining a separate work permit.
- You are enrolled in a course or program
- The minimum duration of course should be 6 months
- A Social Insurance Number (SIN)
What it means is you can work for any employer in any occupation anywhere in Canada, broadening your options and giving you the flexibility to explore different industries. International students can also work on campus, including various employment opportunities within the university or college campus.
Before you start planning your work schedule, it’s essential to keep in mind that while working part-time is an excellent opportunity, you still need to demonstrate sufficient financial resources when applying for your study permit.
It ensures that you have enough funds to support yourself throughout your studies without relying solely on income from work. Keep this in mind as you plan your finances to ensure a smooth transition.
Finding Your Dream Student Job
Once you’re eligible to work in Canada, the next step is to find a job that aligns with your interests and goals. The Canadian job market is often eager to hire students for part-time positions, presenting you with a vast array of possibilities. However, a successful job hunt requires preparation and a well-crafted resume and cover letter.
Update your Resume
Start by updating your resume and tailoring it to the expectations of Canadian employers. Highlight your relevant skills, experiences, and academic achievements. Make it stand out by using action verbs and quantifiable achievements to showcase your capabilities.
Write a Professional Cover Letter
Your cover letter is your chance to demonstrate your personality and convince potential employers that you’re the best fit for the job. Craft a customized cover letter for each application, emphasizing how you meet the specific criteria outlined in the job description. If you’re applying online, use your cover letter as an introductory email, attaching your resume as a PDF.
Applying for Jobs
When it comes to finding job opportunities, various avenues can lead you to success. Online platforms like Indeed, Monster, and Craigslist offer hundreds of part-time job postings. Additionally, your city or town may have its own job portal, listing positions at recreation centers, libraries, or in administrative roles.
Taking a walk around your neighborhood and looking for “Help Wanted” signs in shop windows can also yield promising results. If you decide to explore this method, bring paper copies of your resume, dress professionally, and be prepared to discuss your availability and qualifications.
This face-to-face interaction can sometimes lead to an on-the-spot job interview, making it an excellent opportunity to make a lasting impression.
Don’t forget Studies
Remember that being a student is valuable, and you shouldn’t hesitate to prioritize your studies. Communicate your availability and any scheduling restrictions to your employer, especially during exam periods or when approaching significant deadlines.
International students have the same labor rights as all workers in Canada, so make sure you familiarise yourself with your rights and the minimum wage regulations in your province. Keeping proper employment records and receiving payslips will also be crucial when filing your tax return.
Counting the Cash
In Canada, many employers pay their employees through direct debit, depositing your earnings directly into your bank account. To ensure a smooth payment process, it’s important to have a bank account set up and readily provide your account details to your employer. Familiarize yourself with the various banking options available in Canada to decide on the best bank for your needs.
Co-op Work Permit
While most international students don’t need a separate work permit to work while studying in Canada, there is an essential exception—co-op or internship work placements. Certain study programs require students to complete these work placements as a prerequisite for graduation. In such cases, international students must obtain a Co-op work permit in addition to their study permit.
To secure a Co-op work permit, you’ll need a valid study permit and a letter from your university or college confirming that all students in your program must complete work placements to obtain their degree. The Co-op work permit can be issued alongside your study permit, provided your acceptance letter specifies the requirement for a Co-op or internship placement. Your university or college can guide you through the application process and help you submit the necessary documents.
As you near the end of your studies, it’s essential to understand the options available for continuing employment in Canada. If you plan to stay and work in the country, you may be eligible to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). This permit allows you to work anywhere in Canada for any employer for up to three years after graduating. To be eligible, you must apply within 180 days of receiving written confirmation that you’ve completed your study program.
In case you didn’t apply for the PGWP or decide to return to work in Canada temporarily, you might still have opportunities through the International Experience Canada (IEC) categories. These programs allow young individuals from various countries to work in Canada for a year or two, depending on their category and country of citizenship.
Unlock the Doors to Canada Immigration with Sangam Immigration
Working while studying in Canada goes beyond earning a wage. The experience and connections you build can set you apart during your job search and become valuable assets for your future career goals, whether in Canada or elsewhere.
Embrace the opportunities, unleash your potential, and maximise your Canadian study experience with expert help from Sangam Immigration! Our team of immigration experts is here to help you with all things immigration. Visit our website now to learn more!
- Can I work while studying in Canada?
Yes, as an international student in Canada, you are generally allowed to work part-time during your studies.
2. How many hours can I work per week as a student? Is it true that you can only work 20 hours?
As a student in Canada, you can work more than 20 hours per week during regular academic sessions and full-time during scheduled breaks, such as summer or winter holidays. The rule was started in November 15, 2022 and will end on December 31, 2023.
3. Are there any restrictions on the type of work I can do?
- Full-time work permissible during scheduled breaks (winter, summer holidays, fall or spring reading week)
- Overtime and dual part-time jobs allowed for increased hours
- Requirement: Maintain full-time student status before and after the break
4. Do I need a work permit to work while studying?
If you hold a valid study permit in Canada, you do not need a separate work permit to work on or off campus. Your study permit itself allows you to work part-time during your studies.