Immigration After Graduation

Student Resource Study

Canada’s immigration policies in recent years is more in favor of international students. For example, many immigration programs do not require job offer, so that international students can immigrate by starting their own business and directly apply for immigration after graduation. These are all benefits for international students.

The table below provides an updated overview of the various Canadian immigration options for international students and graduates in Canada.

Program/categoryAligned with Express Entry?Is a job offer required?Additional information
Canadian Experience ClassYesNo Graduates may become eligible after working in Canada on a Post-Graduation Work Permit. Graduates may also obtain additional Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points for their Canadian credentials
Federal Skilled Worker ProgramYesNo Graduates with Canadian credentials receive more points under the education factor. Graduates may also obtain additional Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points for their Canadian credentials.
Federal Skilled Trades ProgramYesNoGraduates may also obtain additional Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) points for their Canadian credentials. 
The Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP) Atlantic International Graduate Program (AIGP)NoYesGraduates of post-secondary institutions in the Atlantic provinces can apply. No work experience is required. Applicants require a two-year post-secondary diploma from a publicly funded learning institution in the Atlantic region. Applications must be submitted within 24 months of obtaining the diploma.
Rural and Northern Immigration PilotNoNoGraduates who meet qualifying education requirements within the designated community are exempt from the program’s work experience criteria.
Alberta Alberta Opportunity StreamNo YesInternational students can benefit from the Alberta Opportunity Stream if they have completed their studies at an approved Alberta post-secondary institution and are employed in Alberta on a Post-Graduation Work Permit. 
British Columbia BC PNP Skills Immigration: International GraduateNoYesNot restricted to graduates of BC institutions, graduates of institutions across Canada may apply; category operates under Expression of Interest system called SIRS; Post-secondary education completed in BC is worth 8 SIRS points; Post-secondary education completed in Canada (outside BC) worth 6 SIRS points.
British Columbia BC PNP Express Entry: International GraduateYesYesNot restricted to graduates of BC institutions, graduates of institutions across Canada may apply; category operates under Expression of Interest system called SIRS; Post-secondary education completed in BC is worth 8 SIRS points; Post-secondary education completed in Canada (outside BC) is worth 6 SIRS points.
British Columbia BC PNP Skills Immigration: International Post-GraduateNoNoFor individuals who have obtained a master’s or doctoral degree in the natural, applied or health sciences from a BC institution.
British Columbia BC PNP Express Entry: International Post-GraduateYesNoFor individuals who have obtained a master’s or doctoral degree in the natural, applied or health sciences from a BC institution.
Manitoba MPNP Skilled Worker in ManitobaNoYesMust have attended an institution in Manitoba (language programs are excluded), except for graduates from a post-secondary program in another province who have been working for a Manitoba employer for at least one year.
Manitoba International Education Stream (IES) – Career Employment Pathway NoYesCandidate must have a full-time job offer from an eligible employer in Manitoba.
Manitoba International Education Stream – Graduate Internship PathwayNoNoCandidates must have completed a master or doctoral degree program in Manitoba within the past 3 years. 
Manitoba International Education Stream – International Student Entrepreneur PilotNoNoCandidates must operate a business as a senior manager on a daily basis from the place of business in Manitoba for at least 6 months prior to nomination while on a valid temporary work permit.
New Brunswick NB Express EntryYesNoInternational students who completed at least two academic years of full-time study at a secondary or post-secondary school in New Brunswick will earn points for adaptability on the point grid used to assess eligibility for this stream. 
New Brunswick NB Skilled Worker StreamNoYesInternational student graduates from a post-secondary institution in New Brunswick with at least six months of work experience in
the province, including work experience obtained while a student will be awarded points for adaptability. 
Newfoundland & Labrador NLPNP International Graduate CategoryNoYesGraduates must have a job or job offer from a Newfoundland & Labrador employer, and must apply while they still have at least 6 months’ validity on their Post-Graduation Work Permit; graduates of eligible publicly funded colleges or universities across Canada may be able to apply.
Newfoundland & Labrador NLPNP Express Entry Skilled WorkerYesYesPrevious study experience in Newfoundland & Labrador is worth additional points towards eligibility.
Newfoundland & Labrador NLPNP International Graduate EntrepreneurNoNoFor graduates of Memorial University or College of the North Atlantic. Must have started or bought a local business and maintained operations for at least one year
Nova Scotia NSNP Skilled Worker StreamNoyesThe Skilled Worker stream helps employers recruit foreign workers and recently graduated international students whose skills are needed in Nova Scotia.
Nova Scotia NSNP Nova Scotia Experience: Express EntryYesNoCandidates must have at least 12 months full-time (or an equal amount in part-time) paid skilled work experience in Nova Scotia in the three years before the application is made, providing an opportunity for graduates who obtain a Post-Graduation Work Permit after studying in Canada.
Nova Scotia NSNP International Graduate Entrepreneur StreamNoNoOpen to recent graduates of Nova Scotia post-secondary institutions who have already started or purchased a business in the province; operates on an Expression of Interest system.
Ontario Ontario Employer Job Offer: International Student StreamNoYesGraduates of a full-time degree or diploma program at an eligible publicly-funded Canadian college or university that is at least 2 years in length, or a 1-year post-graduate certificate program that requires a previous degree in order to qualify, may be able to apply; open to eligible candidates whose job offer has been approved through the Employer pre-screen process. This stream is expected to open and close intermittently. 
Ontario OINP International Masters Graduate StreamNoNoGraduates of a full-time Master’s course at an eligible university in Ontario that is at least 1 year in length may be eligible. This stream is expected to open and close intermittently. 
Ontario OINP International Student PhD Graduate StreamNoNoApplicants must have completed at least two years of PhD studies at a university in Ontario. This stream is expected to open and close intermittently. 
Prince Edward Island PEI PNP Labour Impact Category: International GraduateNoYesThis employer-driven stream allows PEI employers to hire recent graduates from recognized PEI universities and colleges. The job offer must be in the field of studies. 
Quebec Quebec Experience Class (PEQ)NoNoEligible individuals may apply at any time from 6 months before graduation, up to 36 months after graduation; must prove ability in French.
Quebec Quebec Skilled Worker ProgramNoNoHigher education is a significant factor in the points grid; Only completed studies leading to a diploma are taken into account when applications for permanent selection are assessed. 
Saskatchewan SINP Experience Category for StudentsNoYesGraduates with a certificate, diploma, or degree from a recognized post-secondary educational institution in Saskatchewan may be able to apply.
Saskatchewan SINP International Graduate Entrepreneur CategoryNoNoCandidates will have to operate and manage a business in Saskatchewan for at least one year and own at least one-third of the equity in a qualified business in order to be eligible for a provincial nomination for permanent residence.

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