The Government’s Changed Student Work Permit Program

Canada’s strategy regarding foreign students has developed over the years and what we’ve seen is a shift to regarding students as a primary resource for immigration.

There are short- and long-term benefits from having foreign students come to Canada. The educational institutions appreciate them because they bring something special to the campus. They help universities to develop their graduate programs. Mostly, of course, they add to the bank accounts of the campus because foreign students pay higher tuition fees. Because of these benefits, institutions have, for a long time, asked the government to be more facilitative in granting study permits to young people wanting to come and study in Canada.

At the same time, the government has looked at who makes the most successful immigrants in Canada and has determined that the students are “at the top of the class,” so to speak. Students have the advantage of having Canadian training, so employers are generally more interested in hiring them than in hiring immigrants who have been trained abroad. The students have proven their adaptability because they’ve already spent time in Canada and they’re familiar with the culture, with the language, with our customs. If they want to stay, it’s because they feel they fit in and they like it here. When the government looks at how they perform compared to other immigrants, using such economic indicators as income, taxes paid and reliance on social assistance, student immigrants perform very well.

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If you, or someone you care about, is dealing with immigration law issues in the Calgary, Alberta Region, contact Sherritt Greene Barristers & Solicitors for a consultation.

This article is taken from a July 15, 2008 interview with Michael Greene an immigration lawyer with Sherritt Greene Barristers & Solicitors, a Calgary Immigration Law Firm. Note that laws vary from province to province. Please consult with a lawyer in your own area to be sure of the laws and specific issues in your own jurisdiction.