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IRCC is working on 8 new PGWP Changes for International Students

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June 10, 2024

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Naju Gadhavi

8 new changes in pgwp for international students

IRCC is surveying 8 new changes for the  Post Graduation Work Permit, These new reforms are to cater to the needs of the labor market while also reducing the volume of PGWP holders.

These new reforms are to be considered for international students who are already in Canada and those who will be coming to Canada in the future.

The PGWP, a key program attracting students with post-graduation work opportunities, underwent recent tightening by Canada to prevent misuse. Now, a new survey suggests further changes might be on the horizon.

There will be 8 point survery included in the process to surface the program in a better way, which brings more clarity to the goverment and also will streamline the whole process.

In the Blog we will discover all the 8 points in the survey and what they could mean for International Students in Canada already studying or further planning to study in the country.

You need to study something which Canada really needs workers for

The Survey suggests Canada might require students to choose program that fit with the job where they aren’t enough people to work for, this means studying things Canada needs like construction, engineering, Healthline workers.

New tests might be Introduced for English and French

Canada might make you pass new language tests to qualify for the program it can be either French or English.


key points pgwp

Lets understand all the Key points

Question 1: If PGWP eligibility were restricted based solely on occupations in shortage and corresponding programs of study, which occupations should be included based on the needs in your area? Please indicate if there are any occupations in shortage that should have been reflected in the mapping document, along with your rationale.


If Canada decides to make students pick programs based on job needs (occupation-specific), is there anything missing from the current list of jobs Canada already identified?

Canada uses two systems (CIP and something called NOC) to categorize jobs and study programs. They’re asking if there are any important jobs missing from their initial list that connects programs to jobs in high demand.

Question 2: What, if any, cohorts should be exempted from these changes, such as francophone students, graduate degree programs, or others? Please indicate the rationale.


The second survey question will likely ask about possible exceptions if new PGWP rules are made, such as for students who speak French well or are in certain degree programs.

This is similar to past PGWP changes, like giving Master’s and PhD graduates a 3-year PGWP no matter how long their studies were.

The new proposed changes will decide if the PGWP rules should give exceptions to some degree programs or be based on how well students speak French.

Question 3: Should international students be required to demonstrate proof of a job offer aligned with the occupational shortage list in order to hold a PGWP beyond one year?


The third question aims to address the rise in temporary residents, mainly PGWP holders, in Canada.

If this condition is included in the PGWP eligibility criteria, students will need to provide proof of a job offer to keep working on a PGWP.

This requirement appears to be specific to study programs that match the occupational shortage list referenced in the first question, rather than applying to all programs.

Question 4: Should any other eligibility criteria (language, provincial support, etc.), apart from a job offer, be applied to PGWP holders seeking to extend their permit past one year?


This notifies students that they may be required to submit another language proficiency test or provincial approval to continue working on PGWP after the first year.

Question 5: What is your view of applying these labour market-based changes to PGWP eligibility to all graduates upon announcement this year, rather than grandfathering students who are already studying in Canada at the time of implementation?


This question suggests that the immigration department is debating whether to exempt current students from labor market-based changes to PGWP eligibility that might be announced this year, posing a potential threat to current students in Canada who are already enrolled in a study program. Minister Miller seems prepared to take a tough stance, aiming to solidify his position based on responses from educational institutions to this question, although new government policies typically exempt existing students.

Question 6: How often should the occupational shortage list be revised, and at what point thereafter should it be applied to students whose studies are underway?


This straightforward question asks how often we should update the in-demand occupations list and when the updates should take effect. Should we revise the list annually, every two years, or every three years? Once updated, should the changes apply from the next semester or six months later?

Question 7: Do changes to the PGWP being explored align with the profiles of candidates you’d like to remain working in your jurisdictions in the long term?


This survey is trying to figure out if the new rules for getting a work permit after graduation will make students more likely to stay in the area where they studied for a long time.

Question 8: Is your PNP positioned to offer a viable pathway to permanent residence for international graduates with job offers in these key sectors? Are there any gaps between the labour market needs you have identified and your PNP’s existing streams? Will any PNP stream amendments be required to ensure they remain responsive to graduates and PGWP holders in specific occupations (e.g., regulated occupations)?


Question number 8 in this survey aims to ensure that students are on a path to permanent residency and meet the eligibility requirements of the provincial nominee program (PNP) in a specific province.

It also seeks to assess if existing PNP streams align well with the province’s labor market needs and if they need reforms for certain occupations, such as regulated professions requiring licensing.

This is a positive step to help foreign students succeed by improving their chances of moving from temporary residency to permanent residency.



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