Immigration to Ontario as an International Student

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Ontario welcomes new immigrants who have been international students in Canada. Recently, government policies have changed to make the immigration process more accessible to students who have studied in Canada as international students, as outlined in Canada’s International Education Strategy:

“…it will soon become easier for those international students attending designated educational institutions to work during their studies. International students are a future source of skilled labour, as they may be eligible after graduation for permanent residency through immigration programs, such as the Canadian Experience Class (introduced in 2008). International students are well positioned to immigrate to Canada as they have typically obtained Canadian credentials, are proficient in at least one official language and often have relevant Canadian work experience.” (p. 12)

From Canada’s International Education Strategy

Immigration Process

Potential permanent residence candidates are ranked against each other in a point based system. Points can be awarded for:

  • a job offer, and/or
  • a nomination from a province or territory, and/or
  • skills and experience factors.

A candidate can get additional points for:

  • a job offer supported by a Labour Market Impact Assessment, or
  • a nomination by a province or territory

Post-Graduation Work Permit Program leading to Immigration

The PGWPP (see “Careers/Working in Ontario" allows students who have graduated from a participating Canadian post-secondary institution to gain valuable Canadian work experience. Skilled Canadian work experience gained through the PGWPP helps graduates qualify for permanent residence in Canada through Express Entry.  ( )

Express Entry

Express Entry is a new application management system introduced by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to manage permanent resident applications for skilled migration to Canada.

Express Entry is used to manage applications for permanent residence under these federal economic immigration programs:

Ontario Express Entry

(adapted from )

Ontario has created two new streams for skilled workers who want to live and work permanently in Ontario. The two new streams draw from the Federal Express Entry selection system.

This enables Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP) to nominate individuals that have qualified for Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s Express Entry pool and who have the required education, skilled work experience, language ability, and other factors to help them successfully establish and integrate into Ontario’s labour market and communities.

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