Citizenship and Immigration Canada has recently announced the upcoming changes for the program.
These changes will take effect on June 1st, 2014 and the main changes are the following:
- Limit issuance of study permits to students attending designated learning institutions, including those designated by a provincial/territorial ministry of education to host international students;
- Establish new study permit conditions requiring all students to enroll in and actively pursue a course or program of study after arrival in Canada;
- Provide exemptions to those whose primary purpose is not study, including family members and those foreign nationals already exempt from study permit fees, from the conditions on study permit holders;
- Provide an exemption from the requirement to obtain a study permit for foreign nationals who are registered Indians under Canada’s Indian Act;
- Allow issuance of removal orders by delegated officials in circumstances where students are not complying with their study permit conditions;
- Authorize temporary residents already in Canada to apply for a study permit from within Canada if they are studying at the preschool, primary or secondary level, are on an academic exchange or are a visiting student at a designated learning institution, or have completed a course or program of study that is a condition for acceptance at a designated learning institution;
- Limit access to international student work permit programs to eligible study permit holders attending a designated learning institution;
- Authorize full-time international students attending designated institutions to work part time during their studies provided they hold a valid study permit and are enrolled in an academic, vocational or professional training program of a duration of at least six months; and
- Re-focus work permit access for international students to better support the objective for which these programs were originally designed — providing international students with opportunities to gain valuable Canadian work experience, which will in turn help eligible students meet the requirements to apply for permanent residence in Canada.
These Regulations offer greater protection to temporary residents by preventing foreign nationals from gaining admittance to Canada through an institution whose sole purpose is the facilitation of foreign nationals into Canada. These Regulations also provide more assurances to Canadians that temporary residents on a study permit will have a positive impact on Canadian society and the Canadian labour market by ensuring that foreign students are primarily in Canada for the purpose of study and are actively contributing to the economy through tuition and living expenses – the Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Canada said recently.
These changes also bring Canada’s policies more closely in line with those of other countries, such as the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.