Monday, March 7, 2016

Working While Studying in Canada

Heitor Castro, Brazilian International Student, shares his experience

Toronto, Canada, is a multicultural and diverse urban centre that offers a variety of outdoor activities and beautiful parks. The quality of life, public transportation, and entertainment make Toronto one of Canada’s top destinations for international students.

Studying in Canada has another perk: international students might be eligible to work while completing their programs. Before coming to Canada, I double-checked the options for working on and off-campus so I could get valuable work experience alongside my education.

First, I found out that my Study Permit allowed me to work on or off campus without a specific work permit. In my case, it was stated that I could accept employment on the campus (Humber!) I’m registered at for my fulltime studies. Another possibility granted in my Study Permit was that I might work off-campus for 20 hours per week during the semester and full-time during regular breaks. For more information, see the Government of Canada website: Work on Campus and Work off Campus.

I also applied for a Co-op Work Permit, so I could complete the mandatory hours needed for my program’s Field Placement (see the list of Humber College’s programs and their requirements here). Once I had this specific co-op work permit, I started searching for internships. Right now, I’m glad to be part of the Marketing & Communications Team at the Humber International Centre! I’m getting work experience and also accomplishing the amount of work placement hours needed to graduate.

After graduating, I intend to continue my professional development in Canada. In order to fulfill this objective, I will have to apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWPP). A PGWPP might be issued for the duration equivalent to the length of my program (two years) or up to a maximum of three years.


A good source of information for jobs and opportunities in Canada is the Humber Career Centre which also offers exclusive services for students and alumni such as resume and cover letter reviews and mock interviews to help students prepare for their career in Canada. I have already started using their resources so that I will be well prepared for the Canadian labour market when I graduate later this year!

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