Study Permits

Once students have received their formal Letter of Acceptance and have paid their Commitment Fee, they should immediately apply for the necessary study permit and other travel documentation. This can include:

  • A Study Permit issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada
  • An Electronic Travel Authorization 
    • All visa-exempt foreign nationals (except U.S. citizens and certain other small groups) travelling to, or transiting through, Canada by air are to apply for an electronic travel authorization (eTA). Apply for your eTA online.

For more information about what you need prior to your arrival in Canada, please visit the EduCanadaPre-departure Guide for International Students or the WelcomeBC website.

Submit Proof of your Study Permit

The deadline to submit proof of your study permit is based on your term intake.

For example, if you are starting your program in:

  • January: the deadline to submit your study permit is December 1st
  • May: the deadline to submit your study permit is April 1st
  • September: the deadline to submit your study permit is August 1st

Submit proof of your study permit by emailing a colour-scanned copy of your study permit to the Office of International Affairs with your name and student number.

Working While Studying

Most students with a valid study permit are permitted to work up to 20 hours per week while studying full-time and work full-time during semester breaks. You can only start working in Canada once your study program has started. Students will require a Social Insurance Number (SIN) to be paid for their work. More information about obtaining a SIN can be found on the Government of Canada’s website.

Additional information regarding eligibility requirements to work while studying in Canada can be found on the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada webpage.

Post-Graduation Work Permit

A Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) allows international students who have graduated from a participating Canadian post-secondary institution to gain valuable Canadian work experience.

Upon completing a certificate, diploma, or degree program of at least 8 months in length, you may apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) to work full-time in Canada for up to three years after graduation. You don’t need a job offer to apply and can work anywhere in Canada in any occupation.

Reasons To Apply For Your PGWP

There are several reasons why you might consider applying for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) after completing your studies at JIBC. For one, it can help you advance your career goals and gain valuable Canadian work experience. Additionally, if you're interested in pursuing Canadian permanent residency, a PGWP can serve as a pathway to prepare you for certain permanent resident programs.

It's worth noting that you can only apply for a PGWP once in your lifetime. If you're unsure whether you'll stay or return to Canada after your studies, it's a good idea to apply for the PGWP in case your plans change, as you'll lose the opportunity to apply after 180 days. To help you make an informed decision, you may want to consult with an International Student Advisor. It's also important to note that you don't need to live in Canada or hold a job at all times to keep your work permit valid.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), you must generally meet the following requirements:

  • You must have completed a program of study that lasted at least 8 months and led to a degree, diploma, or certificate.
  • You must have studied full-time for immigration purposes each academic session without taking gaps in studies that are not considered actively pursuing studies unless you took “authorized leave.” You may take scheduled program breaks.
  • You must have completed at least 50% of your program in Canada, which is calculated based on the number of courses completed in Canada.
  • You must have completed at least 50% of your program in person.
  • In normal circumstances, online courses completed outside Canada do not count toward the length of your PGWP.

Additional situations in which you may still be eligible for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) include:

  • You studied part-time in your final academic session only.
  • You took an authorized gap in studies for less than 150 days.
  • You were eligible for the temporary PGWP policies in place until August 31, 2023, which allowed courses moved online due to COVID-19 to count towards the length of your PGWP.
    • Students who begin a program between September 2022 and August 2023
    • Students who were enrolled in a PGWP-eligible program in March 2020 or began a program between May 2020 and August 2022

You can find full eligibility details on the Government of Canada website.

If you took time away from studies or studied part-time, it's recommended that you draft a letter of explanation and gather supporting documents, and consult International Student Advising before submitting your application. Ultimately, officers will make the final decision.

Applying For Your Work Permit (PGWP)

Step 1: Log in to your GCKey (or create your GCKey)

Once you log in to your online account, click on “Apply to come to Canada,” and then click on “Visitor visa, study, and/or work permit.”

Step 2: Complete the questionnaire and you will see a document checklist.

Step 3: Gather your documents and upload them to your IRCC online account. If you apply for your PGWP from within Canada, you will need the following:

  • Completed application form: Application to Change Conditions, Extend my Stay or Remain in Canada as a Worker - IMM 5710
  • An Official Letter of Completion issued by JIBC International – Applicants must provide a letter stating that they have completed all the requirements of their program.
  • Final Transcript – This can be an official transcript or an unofficial transcript. You must wait until ALL final grades have been released before requesting a transcript. Students wishing to obtain their Official Transcript may order them online via Self-Service.
  • Photocopies of passport pages clearly showing the passport number and the dates of issue and expiry (include all pages with photos, signatures, stamps, visas, and other markings)
  • Photocopy of your current immigration document (i.e study permit)
  • A digital photo that meets photo specifications
  • An explanation letter (optional, can be uploaded to “Client Information”)

Step 4: Pay the $255 application fees

Processing times: IRCC processing times may vary depending on many factors. Check typical processing times on the IRCC website.

When to Apply: You are recommended to apply for your PGWP within 90 days after your completion date while your study permit is still valid, even though you can apply under another temporary status within 180 days.

See the full instructions by IRCC – Application Guide 5580

Frequently Asked Questions 

Am I eligible to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit?

  • If you are a student at JIBC and you maintain full-time status while completing a certificate, diploma, or degree program that lasts for at least 8 months, you are eligible to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP). To qualify, you must have completed a program that led to a certificate, diploma, or degree and lasted for a minimum of 8 months. Additionally, you must have studied consecutive full-time terms, excluding scheduled breaks. You may complete an eligible program as a part-time student in the last term.

*If you were required to put your studies on hold or become part-time study due to course cancellation as a result of public health measures at the university, for Spring and Summer 2020 terms only, your eligibility for a PGWP will not be impacted. 
*How to find out if your online courses are eligible for PGWP, check the Transition period for distance learning measures which allow courses moved online due to the pandemic to count toward the length of PGWP.

What should I do if my study permit is expiring, and I need more time to apply for my Post-Graduation Work Permit?

  • You may apply for a post-graduation work permit from within Canada if you have valid temporary status. If your study permit is expiring soon after the completion of your program, we strongly recommend you apply for a study permit extension to ask for an additional three months. You should include a Letter of Explanation to support your application for a short study permit extension so that you have enough time to apply for a PGWP.

Can I work after submitting my post-graduation work permit application?

  • Graduates who apply for a post-graduation work permit before the expiry of their study permit are eligible to work full-time without a work permit while waiting for a decision on their application if meeting all requirements.

My study permit expired a few months ago and I applied to extend it. Can I work after I submit my PGWP application while I am under “Maintained Status?”

  • If you have applied for your study permit extension before its expiry, you are under maintained status. You are NOT authorized to work after you submit your PGWP application while on implied status. You will be able to work after your PGWP application is approved.

If you still have questions, the Office of International Affairs team is here to support you. Get in touch with us via email or book a virtual call with one of our International Student Advisors.

Have questions? Talk to an International Student Advisor

Contact the Office of International Affairs

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