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Working in Canada

Work experience can assist you as you begin to pursue your career. It is valuable as it provides you with exposure to the Canadian workplace environment and culture.

As an international student there are various options for work in Canada. Use the section below to determine what work rules you need to follow and type of work opportunities are available to you while pursuing your studies.

Eligibility to Work on/off campus

Full-time international students enrolled in a post-secondary program at a Designated Learning Institution, external link may work on or off campus without a work permit if they meet all of the following conditions:

  • Possess a valid study permit;
  • Have already started to study in their program;
  • Have a Social Insurance Number (SIN);
  • Have conditions on their study permit that confirms on and off campus work eligibility;
  • Are enrolled in a program that is more than six months in duration and leads to a degree or diploma

By working on campus, you can expand your social and professional networks as well as be more involved in the campus community. From an immigration standpoint, there is no restriction on the number of hours that you can work on campus.

Through the Ryerson Career & Co-op Centre, international students can take advantage of various on campus job opportunities.

If you are interested in working on-campus check out the Career Centre & Co-op Centre website, opens in new window

International students are eligible for the following on-campus categories:

  1. Career Boost International Work Experience Program (CBI)
  2. Other On-Campus Jobs
  3. Teaching Assistant (TA), Graduate Assistant (GA), Lab Monitor, or Invigilator

Start looking for the tools and help you need to succeed in building your career by checking out the Career Centre website, opens in new window.


Did you know?...

Students enrolled in the Ryerson English as a Second Language Foundation Program (RESLFP), International University Foundation Program (IUFP), exchange students and visiting international students are eligible to work on campus if you have a valid study permit and are full-time.

 

Off-campus work is work that takes place on any location outside the boundaries of the campus at which a student is registered. If you meet the above eligibility conditions, you may work up to 20 hours per week, external link, opens in new window off campus during a regular academic session.

If you are interested in working off-campus check out the Career Centre & Co-op Centre off-campus jobs page, opens in new window

Start looking for the tools and help you need to succeed in building your career by checking out the Career Centre website. Hyperlink to https://www.ryerson.ca/career/

Information on how to obtain other work permits such as co-op work permit or post-graduation work permit please visit here.


Did you know?...

Students enrolled in the Ryerson English as a Second Language Foundation Program (RESLFP), International University Foundation Program (IUFP), exchange students and visiting international students are not eligible to work off campus but you may be eligible for on campus work.

 

If you meet the above eligibility conditions, you may work full-time off campus during scheduled breaks. Scheduled breaks include Fall Reading Week, Mid-Year Break, Winter Reading Week and may also include the Spring/Summer semester if this is not a required academic session in your program.

Did you know?...

Graduate students are continuously enrolled throughout the academic year. This means that the Spring/Summer semester is not a scheduled break for Masters or PhD students. Scheduled breaks for graduate students include Fall Reading Week, Mid-Year Break and Winter Reading Week.

 

What is it?

The co-op work permit allows international students to work full-time during academic sessions when the work is a requirement of your program of study. Your co-op work permit can only be used for this kind of work and will be issued for the same length as your study permit.

Eligibility

Some programs include work experience as part of their curriculum. As per the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website, you may apply for a co-op or intern work permit if:

  • you have a valid study permit
  • working is required to complete your study program in Canada
  • you have a letter from your school that confirms all students in your program need to complete work placements to get their degree
  • your co-op or internship is 50% or less of the total program of study


Duration

Usually, a co-op work permit is issued to the same duration as your study permit; however, may vary depending on the length of your co-op, internship or placement term. Your co-op work permit will not be issued for a longer duration than your study permit.

When to apply

We recommend applying as soon as you have been accepted into the co-op stream of your program or receive confirmation that you can pursue a placement or internship as a part of your program of study. You will need to request a status letter from our office to support your co-op work permit application if you are applying after you have obtained your study permit.

We recommend submitting your co-op work permit application online as processing times are quicker. Check out processing times here., external link, opens in new window

  

Did you know…

If you apply to extend your study permit and obtain a co-op work permit at the same time, you only need to complete one immigration application. This also applies if you apply for your initial study permit and co-op work permit at the same time. A co-op work permit has no government processing fee - the application is free of charge!

 

What is it?

A post-graduation work permit, external link, opens in new window (PGWP) is a document that gives you permission to remain in Canada as a worker and work full time for up to three years after you graduate from a Canadian post-secondary institution. 

Applicants can only receive the PGWP once in a lifetime, therefore, if you have plans to pursue further studies in Canada, you may wish to consult an International Student Advisor to discuss when to apply.

Eligibility

To be eligible for a Post-Graduation Work Permit, you must have maintained full-time student status during each session of your program(s) of study with a duration of at least 8 months. To see full eligibility details including those who do not qualify, visit the IRCC website (external link), external link, opens in new window.

When to apply

You must complete all requirements of your program of study prior to applying for the Post-Graduation Work Permit. This means that you are not eligible to apply during your final semester.

Apply within 180 days of completion of your program of study, please note that you must meet one of the following criteria: 

  • You must have a valid study permit
  • Have held a valid study permit at some point within the 180 day period and applied for visitor status before your study permit became invalid.
  • Applied to for restoration of temporary resident status

What documents do I need from Ryerson?

Letter of program completion

Letters of program completion are provided by ISS, learn more about requesting a status letter here.

Transcript

Request your official transcript from Ryerson. An official Ryerson transcript is a complete record of a student's enrolment at Ryerson University including all undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education courses, as well as credits granted towards your program.

Learn more about requesting your transcript by clicking here., opens in new window

Duration of PGWP

How long the post-graduation work permit is valid for depends on the length of your study program. If your program was:

  • Less than eight months
    • You aren’t eligible for a PGWP
  • More than eight months but less than two years
    • The length of your PGWP should coincide with the length of your program of study as confirmed in your Letter of Completion provided by ISS. For example, if you studied for nine months, a work permit may be issued for up to nine months.
  • Two years or more
    • A PGWP may be issued for three years
  • More than one program
    • The length of the PGWP should combine the length of each program. If the combined length is more than 2 years, the PGWP may be valid for up to 3 years.


Did you know…

Individuals who complete a master’s or doctoral degree in Canada when the DLI has confirmed in the written confirmation of program completion that the degree is 16 to 23 months in duration, (external link, external link) and does not include regularly scheduled breaks may be issued a three year work permit.

In order to work in certain jobs in Canada, you will need to undergo a medical examination by an approved panel physician, external link, opens in new window. This includes positions through co-op terms, internships and placements, as well as on or off campus positions. Jobs that require medical examination include those in health services, primary or secondary education, child care and more. For a complete list of jobs that require a medical examination, please see medical examination requirements for temporary residents, external link, opens in new window.

The Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a nine-digit number that you need to work in Canada or to have access to government programs and benefits.

It is also used to file taxes, however certain students can also get an Individual Tax Number (ITN) instead. Learn more here. 

A SIN is issued to one person only and it cannot legally be used by anyone else. You are responsible for protecting your SIN, external link, opens in new window. Store any document containing your SIN and personal information in a safe place—do not keep your SIN with you.

For more information, visit the Service Canada website, external link, opens in new window.


Who is eligible to apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN)?

You must have one of the following conditions or remarks printed on your study permit in order to apply for a SIN:

If you are eligible to work in Canada as an international student but you do not have one of the conditions listed above, you must determine if you need to:

  1. You can Amend your study permit, external link, opens in new window if:
    1. There was a mistake made by IRCC when the study permit was issued. If you are eligible to work in Canada, but the wording on your study permit states you "may not work" or "may not accept employment", you will need to amend your study permit to get the right wording to apply for a SIN.
  2. Change conditions, external link, opens in new window on your study permit if:
    1. You have changed your program of study which allows you to work
    2. Your study permit says “The permit does not permit the holder to engage in off-campus employment in Canada”

The application is free!

  1. Valid and original study permit/and or work permit (if applicable) that meet the conditions
  2. Valid and original passport

Apply at the Service Canada office nearest you. To find a Service Canada office nearest you in order to apply for the SIN, visit the Service Canada website, external link, opens in new window.


The Service Canada offices nearest to Ryerson are:

  1. City Hall

    100 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario, M5H 2N2
    Behind Nathan Philip Square
    Office Hours: Monday to Friday from 8:30am-4:00pm

  2.  25 St. Clair Avenue East, Toronto, Ontario M4T 3A4

    Office Hours: Monday to Friday 8:30am- 4:00pm

 

If the correct documentation is presented at Service Canada, a number will be issued immediately.

  1. Employers
  2. Tax Preparer

Yes, they do!

SINs beginning with a "9" have an expiry date and will be valid until the end of the person's authorized stay in Canada ie. the expiry date of your study permit or work permit.

Once you have received your renewed study permit/and or work permit you can renew your SIN.

 

Important notice: All students who are eligible to graduate starting June 2019 will be required to attend a PGWP Immigration Insights Workshop before requesting their Letter of Completion from ISS.

To register for one of the PGWP workshops, please visit the following ConnectRU link:

https://connectru.ryerson.ca/organization/iss/events