How to use a one-year study program to stay back in Canada

For many overseas students, their objective isn’t just to go to Canada to study but to have the chance to work in Canada or even be permanent residents.

The Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE) has stated that 60% of students from abroad are planning to apply to become permanent residents in Canada.

Most students know that the length of their studies determines the duration of their postgraduate authorization to work (PGWP) in Canada. The PGWP permits international students to live in Canada following their studies and get the working experience required to pursue a career, as well as permanent residency applications.

A one-year degree program can grant you a one-year postgraduate work authorization (PGWP); if you are enrolled in a program that lasts for two academic years, you’ll be granted up to 3 years of PGWP. More information about the PGWP procedure and prerequisites to be a citizen of Canada are available at this link.

We can also talk about other topics!

Suppose you are enrolled in an annual program for one year and wish to obtain permanent residence status so you can stay permanently in Canada. In that case, You will have to determine how to become a permanent resident before your one-year PGWP. There are various permanent residence options within Canada, each with multiple conditions.

The duration of the PGWP, which is one year, is a race against the clock for many students, especially those requiring at least one year of work experience in Canada, to qualify for permanent residency.

Some students have completed this in the past and were able to file a permanent residence application before the expiration of the 1-year permit. However, to accomplish this, you must prepare well!

It is essential to know your options for permanent residence in advance and make sure you make the complete permanent residence application before when the one-year PGWP expires. If you can accomplish this, you could apply for a Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP) that allows you to work until a decision is taken regarding your application for permanent residence.

Remember that your PGWP is issued only once in your life, but the BOWP permits you to work as long as your permanent residency application is completed. However, it is essential to note that you must submit an entire permanent residence application (so it’s not only expressing a desire or creating an account for permanent residence that is required to qualify for BOWP). 

More details on the BOWP procedure and the conditions for Canada are available here.

A lot of students can submit a complete permanent residency application within the timeframe of one year of their PGWP or get work before or shortly after finishing their studies and begin working as soon as they submit their application for PGWP or required for the Canadian Degree to earn additional points for various permanent residence programs, such as Express Entry.

This means they’re in a position to fulfill the requirements for permanent residence programs earlier enough and then submit an application to apply for the Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP) in the manner described earlier.

It is recommended that students enrolled in a one-year course consider going to provinces with nominated student programs that don’t require an entire one-year Canadian work experience.

For instance, in Saskatchewan, it is just six months of post-study experience to be eligible to be a nominee for a student for permanent residency. So if you’re the kind of student, who might require nominations to improve your odds of becoming a permanent resident, you should think about this or research your options and make a plan!

I’ve written extensively about the various student nomination programs offered in every province. You can learn more about the procedures and requirements for the provinces on this page.

If you’re considering your options but it’s challenging to complete and obtain the permanent residency you deserve with the one-year postgraduate work permit, you can also opt to do an additional program for the second period (after the first one). You can combine two of your programs for a maximum of a three-year work permit.

The second program has to be completed before the time you submit your application for the PGWP. This is the kind of thing that people refer to as a ” 1+1 study” in Canada.

The second program is implemented anyplace within Canada. So it could be at a different school or a different province or city. So long as it’s a DLI that is also qualified for PGWP, You are in good shape.

You’ll also have to extend your permit to complete the second program. Also, you will require evidence of your funds and other documentation for the extension of your permit. The benefit is that applying for an extension of your study permit is much easier as you will be using from within Canada.

If you were granted a one-year PGWP but did not become a permanent resident (or at the very least submit an application for permanent residence to obtain the Bridging Open Work Permit – BOWP), then the alternatives are:

  • Go back to school, and apply for an additional study permit (but you can’t apply for another PGWP following this)
  • Find an employer or job to provide you with a separate work permit.
  • You can be sponsored to live permanently by a spouse or partner who is a permanent resident or Citizen.
  • You can apply for a visitor’s certificate to ensure your status is valid (you are not legally able to work on this, but you are able to remain in Canada legally to investigate your options for PR)

If you don’t, you’ll be ordered to quit Canada!

We are also hearing about a new permanent residency program that Canada plans for international students/graduates and temporary residents of the country. There’s no formal confirmation of this, but if it happens and the program is made available and is a benefit to a large number of students.

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